Keele-developed training tool commissioned by NHS
- Researchers at Keele University have helped develop a new training tool that is being used by NHS professionals across the country to improve shared decision making between patients and clinicians.
- Research from almost 1,500 health professionals has shown many have gaps in their knowledge and would like to learn more.
- The simulations, developed at Keele alongside the Personalised Care Institute (PCI), have been commissioned by NHS England to help ensure that patients are involved in decision making around their care.
Keele-developed training tool commissioned by NHS England to improve shared decision making between patients and clinicians
NHS professionals across the country are benefiting from new interactive training simulations that have been developed with academics at Keele University.
Commissioned by NHS England, the Personalised Care Institute (PCI) has created simulations in collaboration with Keele to enable clinicians to practice their shared decision-making skills with patients in a risk-free environment before applying them in real clinical settings.
Research from almost 1,500 health professionals has shown many have gaps in their knowledge and would like to learn more.
The simulations are based around a series of lifelike simulated patient consultations which are broken down into three distinct parts, with scenarios including an in-person consultation about osteoarthritis, and a remote consultation by telephone with a father concerning his son's sore throat.
Multiple choice questions are used to provide a structured interaction between the healthcare professional and the on-screen animated patient character, and comprehensive feedback is provided at the end of each exercise, with users able to put their learnings to the test through repeat use.
The team at Keele were heavily involved in developing the technical and visual element of the simulations and creating the on-screen dialogues.
The need for person-centred care
Jessica Thompson, Lecturer in Pharmacy Practice at Keele University, said: "There is a strong drive towards person-centred care which ensures people are given more control and choice when it comes to decisions about their care. Everyone has different preferences, beliefs and values and these should be explored to understand what matters to each individual.
"Shared decision making is a skill and therefore practice is key. The simulations we have helped to develop are a fantastic way for healthcare professionals of any discipline to develop and practice their skills and improve their confidence in having consultations which support patients to get more involved in decisions about their care.
"The simulations really drive home the importance of providing care that is respectful and responsive to patients – which is what we teach our students on a daily basis."
Improving outcomes for patients
Dr Emma Hyde, clinical director of the PCI, said: "We know that shared decision-making leads to better outcomes for patients, with nine out of 10 healthcare professionals stating it should be used routinely and seven out of 10 expressing a desire to learn more about this vitally important personalised care approach.
"Not only will this training equip health and care professionals with the shared decision-making skills and knowledge needed to deliver the very best health outcomes for patients, it will also address the growing desire amongst the general public for greater involvement in key decisions that inform their healthcare."
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