Shared Decision Making at #MedX

You make decisions every day. Some are good; some are not as good. Did you know there is a science to decision making that can help people make better decisions more often? In collaboration with Medicine X, Eli Lilly facilitated a half-day design workshop about improving decision making for patients and providers.

Prior to the workshop at Medicine X, I wrote this blog post to share my thoughts on how Shared Decision Making has improved our care experiences and the opportunities for its use going forward.

At the MedX workshop we zeroed-in on techniques for gaining clarity about our values and preferences—the things we care most about. Only after being clear about these, and integrating them with science and medicine, can the truly “best” treatment choice for an individual patient be selected. A goal set at the start of the workshop was that after learning and practicing these methods, we would brainstorm and share thoughts on how to take this methodology from the realm of research to everyday practice. The following are some of the provocative questions and comments captured during this workshop that generated conversation from the meeting participants and me. You can also check out my full Storify covering the workshop here

In my life, shared decision making has involved a careful pairing of goals and perspectives of the patient and/or family with the risks and benefits from a clinician’s perspective. I think there is tremendous opportunity to use these tools in clinical trials as well. Consider these questions for yourself:

  • What data and information do you wish were more available in making treatment decisions?
  • How would you prefer to receive it?
  • What can be done to change the culture, mindset and actions of patients to expect and fulfill their role in shared decision making?
  • Similarly, what can be done to change the culture, mindset and actions of providers?


Thanks to the workshop, I have lots of new thoughts on how we can best use shared decision making to improve health and care throughout the health care system, and I’m anxious to hear your thoughts, too! Leave us a comment below or on Twitter.