Informed Decision Tools Largely Reduce Ortho Joint Surgeries
Arterburn was asked if the decision tools might scare away patients who should legitimately have surgery. He says "Any patient who is 'scared away' from surgery by a decision aid that provides unbiased statistics about the likely probabilities of benefits and risks of surgery is a patient who prefers not to have surgery...they've seen the facts, and in their own best judgment, the facts don't personally add up to the surgery being a good decision for them at this time."
However, he says, "no decision should be made based on the facts presented in a decision aid alone. The decision aid is not a substitute for a conversation with their health care provider, who can use clinical judgment to advise the patient whether the probabilities presented in the video apply to patients like them."
Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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