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Shared Decision Making Resource Center

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Shared Decision Making at MaineHealth

The following practices, individuals, programs, and groups collaborate with the SDMRC in developing a coordinated approach to SDM within the MaineHealth system.

Primary Care Demonstration Practices, 2009-2012

In 2009, MaineHealth’s Learning Resource Center received funding from the Foundation for Informed Medical Decision Making to introduce decision aids into routine care at MaineHealth primary care practices.  To date,  MMC Family Medicine, MMC Internal Medicine Clinic, Lincoln Medical PartnersFamily Medicine/ Damariscotta, Lincoln Medical Partners Internal Medicine/Damariscotta, Sacopee Valley Health Center, and Mid Coast Medical Group/Bath have implemented SDM programs.  (Employee Health practices at MMC and at LincolnHealth have also participated in the program on a limited basis.)  As of January 2012, practices had distributed more than 550 decision aids, received more than 180 patient experience surveys, and participated in a SDM learning community that can now share best practices with primary care teams throughout MaineHealth.

Paul K. J. Han, MD, MA, MPH
studies risk communication, shared decision making, cancer and palliative care at the MMC Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation.  His specific interests are in the communication and management of uncertainty in health care, with recent emphasis on tools for colorectal cancer risk assessment. 

Moritz Hansen, MD
practices urology within the MMC Genitourinary Cancer Program and studies clinical outcomes, risk communication, personalized risk assessment, and shared decision making related to prostate cancer. 

The Maine Medical Center Joint Replacement Center website now offers decision aids to patients who are considering knee or hip replacement surgery, and will implement a nurse educator-based decision support model in 2012.

In 2011, Maine Medical Partners Neurosurgery and Spine began to develop a SDM program using Healthwise decision aids to improve quality of care for patients considering herniated disc surgery. 

MaineHealth Shared Decision Making Task Force

The SDM Task Force was convened in the Fall of 2011 to guide MaineHealth in its efforts to spread SDM best practices throughout the system.  In the Spring of 2012, the Task Force:

  • Reviewed research, policy briefs, and current SDM activities within MaineHealth and at other health systems;
  • Developed a definition of SDM, a set of Guiding Principles, and a series of process maps for implementing and sustaining SDM at MaineHealth; and
  • Made recommendations to system leaders about resources needed to implement and sustain SDM practice.

 A subset of SDM Task Force members will continue to oversee SDM activities after Spring 2012 as the SDM Advisory Group.

MaineHealth's Dr. Neil Korsen describes a personal experience with shared decision making.

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