Shared Decision Making is an Ethical Imperative

Most medication management decisions in psychiatry involve medications with similar efficacy profiles but complex risk-benefit trade-offs. That's why decisions about psychiatric medications are not just medical decisions. They are also personal decisions that will impact physical health and quality of life(1).

The decision to risk metabolic syndrome, tardive dyskinesia, or reduced sex drive in exchange for symptom relief is not soley the psychiatrist's decision. It must be a shared decision between the practitioner and the person with a psychiatric diagnosis.

CommonGround is a premier product to support shared decision making in psychiatric settings. It is a proven method for helping busy public sector practitioners engaged in shared decision making. Our data indicate that on average psychiatric practitioners using CommonGround arrive at shared decisions 78% of the time, with some centers as high 94%.

Psychiatrist: "I, for one, felt that I already incorporated shared decision making into my practice style, since I typically reviewed options with consumers, provided what education I could within the confines of a clinic appointment, and worked collaboratively with consumers to make a sound medical decision in treatment. Of course, the degree of support and education as well as collaboration that occurs in a formalized process of shared decision making is much more substantial than that which can happen within the bounds of a routine clinic visit, though at the time, my staff and I did not have a frame of comparison. Looking back, I would think it justifiably would be very difficult for most clinicians to fully understand the difference between practice as usual and a fully developed program of shared decision making without actually experiencing both."

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