The SHARE of Ask Share Know
The SHARE of ASK SHARE KNOW is very important, as doctors and nurses are professional BUT not professional mind readers, so be confident in sharing information about you that only you know.
This will help you to discuss what tests or treatment options you would prefer or prefer not to do.
The more you share information about you, the more your health professional will be able to give you the information you need.
This means that the decision you make will take into account things like your medical history, individual risk factors and lifestyle preferences.
If, for example, you are considering which contraceptive method to use, your choice may be influenced by lots of factors including:
- any medical conditions you may have
- plans for children in the future
- feelings you have about the different options.
The more a part of the decision you are, the more likely you are to succeed in getting the benefits of the treatment decided on.
So making the right treatment choice means understanding your treatment options and sharing the decision with your doctor about which option best suits you.
Sharing information with health professionals
People make decisions all the time – many are simple, and many involve multiple choices with multiple possible outcomes.
Making good decisions is a combination of your health professional’s expert knowledge of medicine and your knowledge about your individual lifestyle, preferences and needs – so it is really important that you and your doctor make the decision together.
Shared decision-making is a term used to describe an approach to health care consultations where the health professional and the patient are partners in the decision process. (This could be with a doctor, nurse or another health professional, a physio for example).
Over recent years, the public have increased their expectation of being fully informed about healthcare and available tests or treatment options.
Acceptance of “medical paternalism”, the idea that a doctor doesn’t tell patients lots of details and makes decisions on their behalf, is much less common than it was a few decades ago.