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Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

Saint Louis: Social Determinants of Health Influence Shared Decision Making for Heart Failure Patients

Social determinants of health may limit a person’s ability to make health-related choices, and place certain groups at greater risk for adverse outcomes, prior to and after the development of heart failure. This is according to an article published in JAMA Cardiology by Dr. Kimberly Enard, of The Saint Louis University College for Public Health and Social Justice, and Dr. Paul Hauptman, of the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine.

Shared decision-making processes are associated with increased knowledge; more accurate risk perception; improved values clarification and patient-clinician communication; increased patient satisfaction; and reduced decisional conflict and regret.

The authors state that shared decision-making benefits heart failure patients by engaging them as informed and active partners in decisions about their health care, particularly preference-sensitive decisions for which there is more than one reasonable treatment option.

The article also states that initiating shared decision-making in early symptomatic disease, and as a preventive strategy for heart failure stages A and B, may produce greater long-term benefits.

The authors write that opportunities to deliver patient-centered care exist at the intersection of shared decision-making and social determinants of health frameworks. When shared decision-making is integrated into routine clinical practice, and patients and clinicians work together to manage heart failure, a policy window is open to improve how these patients participate in delivery of their care.

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