In the latest edition of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), authors make a call to action for policymakers to take meaningful steps to implement what the authors call “the sleeper” shared decision making (SDM) provision of the Accountable Care Act (ACA). The authors, Emily Oshima Lee from the Center for American Progress and Dr. Ezekiel J. Emanuel from the University of Pennsylvania, make a compelling argument that the benefits of SDM with the use of decision aids -- improvements in patient knowledge, lower anxiety over the care process, improved health outcomes, reduction in unwarranted variation in care and costs, and greater alignment of care with patients’ values -- should warrant swift action on the provision of ACA (Section 3506) that relates directly to SDM implementation. Lee and Emanuel argue that the current pace of Section 3506 implementation is detrimental to both patients and the health care system as a whole.
Posted in Current News
Tagged ACA, Affordable Care Act, decision aids, health care, health care costs, HHS, NEJM, patient values, practice variation, Section 3506, shared decision making
President Obama’s re-election now makes it all but certain that implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will progress. With a clearer picture of the health care landscape ahead of us, the Informed Medical Decisions Foundation and our colleagues will continue to pursue the opportunities laid out in the ACA to foster nation-wide implementation of shared decision making (SDM). I’d like to point out two key organizations established through the ACA that we hope to work closely with over the coming years. The first being the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI), which cultivates health care transformation by finding new ways to pay for and deliver better care and better health at lower costs.
A sleeper provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) encourages greater use of shared decision making in health care. For many health situations in which there's not one clearly superior course of treatment, shared decision making can ensure that medical care better aligns with patients' preferences and values. One way to implement this approach is by using patient decision aids -- written materials, videos, or interactive electronic presentations designed to inform patients and their families about care options; each option's outcomes, including benefits and possible side effects; the health care team's skills; and costs. Shared decision making has the potential to provide numerous benefits for patients, clinicians, and the health care system, including increased patient knowledge, less anxiety over the care process, improved health outcomes, reductions in unwarranted variation in care and costs, and great alignment of care with patients' values.
Posted in Cost, Decision Aid Effectiveness, Health Care Policy, Patient Decision Aids, Patient Preferences, SDM Implementation
Tagged ACA, CMS, Cochrane Collaborative, decision aids, Group Health, health care costs, HHS, IPDAS, Medicare, NEJM, PCORI, practice variation, shared decision making