James M. Anderson Center for Health Systems Excellence

  • Shared Decision Making

    Shared decision making (SDM) is one approach to translate evidence into point-of-care decision making by clinicians, families and patients at Cincinnati Children’s and accomplish the goals of the Rapid Evidence Adoption to improve Child Health (REACH) program.  

    Shared decision making is a process that involves clinicians communicating information about treatment options, and patients and parents communicating the personal value they place on the trade-offs involved so that agreement on the best strategy for the patient can be reached. 

    This process is critical when clinical decisions involve two or more medically reasonable options that differ in ways that are important to families. The use of decision aids is one strategy to implement shared decision making in practice.

    Our goal at the Anderson Center is to facilitate shared decision making in pediatrics, ensuring the delivery of high-value care that is evidence-based and family-centered.

    Objectives and Strengths 

    Specific objectives include:

    • To create and test a process to efficiently develop and implement decision aids to facilitate shared decision making (Download a draft of our process.)
    • To test factors associated with reliable delivery of shared decision making
    • To spread the new process locally, nationally and internationally
    • To measure results of these objectives  

    Strengths upon which we draw to meet our objectives include:

    • Culture of patient-centered care and a growing institutional capacity for shared decision making
    • Expertise in evidence synthesis
    • Collaboration with internal experts to improve, standardize and spread shared decision making
    • Nationally known leaders in implementation research, quality-improvement and reliability science