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Health Coaching Provides Unbiased, Individual Support

Amy Allen

Amy Allen is Senior Director of Content Services at Health Dialog, a leading provider of care management, healthcare analytics, and decision support. Amy develops decision aids and patient information with a team of writers and video producers.

Take it to Heart! New Decision Aid about Stable Chest Discomfort


If you have coronary heart disease and have also been diagnosed with stable angina, navigating the sea of information about possible treatments can be tough. You might hear about a heart medication study on the news, or about a friend having a heart attack whose life was saved by a stent procedure – but how do you know if any of this applies to you?

Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Instilling Confidence in Women through Shared Decision Making


According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 232,340 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in 2013, making it the second leading cause of cancer death in females, exceeded only by lung cancer. For the 28th consecutive year, the sea of pink can be seen almost everywhere as individuals, charitable organizations and commercial organizations across the country once again joining forces in support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the many women affected by breast cancer.

The Increasing Importance of SDM and Patient Choice in Today’s Healthcare


A recent report (September 2013) from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated that through effective public health measures, necessary screening and medical care, and lifestyle change, at least 200,000 deaths from heart disease and stroke each year are preventable and that more than half of preventable heart disease and stroke deaths happen to people under age 65.

Reframing Healthcare in the Minds of Younger Americans


The clock is ticking towards October 1, 2013 when public insurance exchanges are set to go live and begin offering health plan benefits to an estimated 30 million previously uninsured Americans. And as that day draws closer, all parties involved—plans, providers, employers, and patients—are scrambling to figure out just what it will mean to them from a cost and quality of care perspective. Yet, perhaps one of the biggest conundrums associated with the health insurance marketplace is how to deal with the potential sticker shock facing younger Americans and the ripple effect it could have on everyone. Specifically, with an age band as narrow as 3:1, there is a possibility that premiums for younger people (who tend to be lighter users of service) will be considerably higher in order to compensate for older Americans, who typically utilize more health care services. When combined with a relatively low penalty for not getting coverage, there is a very real fear that many of these ‘young invincibles’ will forgo coverage and simply choose to pay the penalty.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on Shared Decision Making


By Robert Mandel, MD, Chief Executive Officer

American College of Physicians Endorses Shared Decision Making Approach for Prostate Cancer Screening

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In a guidance statement published Tuesday in the Annals of Internal Medicine, the American College of Physicians (ACP) joined the heated discussion on PSA testing by endorsing a shared decision making approach for prostate cancer screening. The ACP Clinical Guidelines Committee developed this guidance statement after reviewing current guidelines on prostate cancer screening in the U.S. 

National Cancer Institute Highlights Shared Decision Making in Practice

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The National Cancer institute (NCI) has spotlighted a  Journal of General Internal Medicine study that more than doubled the rates of colorectal cancer screening in a high-need, low-income, non-English speaking population. NCI has also developed a corresponding implementation guide and toolkit so that this research can be replicated in practice. We couldn’t be happier that our patient decision aid, “Colon Cancer Screening: Deciding What’s Right for You,” is a key component of this toolkit, and that NCI is promoting the importance and adoption of Shared Decision Making.

Implementing decision aids on a large scale: through specialty care (GUEST POST)

Health Dialog Decision Aids

To view the latest published results on the Group Health Cooperative decision aids implementation effort, click here. David Arterburn is Lead Author on the study.

Peter Goldbach on Shared Decision Making in Health Affairs

In this month's issue of Health Affairs, our Chief Medical Officer Peter Goldbach calls for Shared Decision Making in healthcare and asserts the evidence that it works. Here's what he said:

"Dominick Frosch and coauthors describe patients who feel rushed and physicians who don’t explain options or discuss patient preferences (May 2012). The authors propose shared decision making as an antidote but claim it has had “variable and weak” results in its application.

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