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Shared Decision-Making

In the last several years, oncology care providers have increasingly focused on improving the patient experience. One method many have used is to research how other similarly situated programs are implementing change and making improvements.

This project seeks to highlight effective strategies in patient-provider communication, particularly through shared decision-making (SDM). SDM is defined as a collaboration between patients and their clinicians to reach agreement about a health decision involving multiple medically appropriate treatment options. This collaboration requires effective communication between providers and patients. In particular, this education project will explore shared decision-making in relation to specific patient populations, such as those with metastatic disease, low literacy, and advanced old age, in which principles for effective communication differ vastly.

With this project, ACCC seeks to:

  • Identify barriers and best practices in shared decision-making
  • Improve the patient experience, access to care, shared decision-making
  • Provide ACCC membership with models and tools to use to enhance shared decision-making across their programs and practices
  • Create a reference that can be used to support effective design and implementation of programs employing techniques to increase the use of shared decision-making with patients.

For more information on this project, please contact the ACCC Provider Education department.


Featured Publication

This project included a national quantitative survey as well as focus groups and interviews with multidisciplinary team members from four cancer programs. This publication identifies a wide range of methods for building engagement with patients, with a special focus on shared decision-making in the context of metastatic disease, geriatric oncology, and limited health literacy.

Thank you to the following ACCC Cancer Program Member sites for their participation:

  • Southern Illinois Healthcare Cancer Institute, Carterville, IL
  • Levine Cancer Institute, Atrium Health, Charlotte, NC
  • Maine Medical Center Cancer Institute, Scarborough, ME
  • University of Arizona Cancer Center, Tuscon, AZ


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