Getting started

Implementing shared decision making across multiple teams needs senior support, a core team, clear plan and committed clinical teams.

The long term ambition is that shared decision making becomes integrated into the way teams work and is 'just the way we do things'. However, you will need to dedicate some time and resources to setting it up and establishing it at the outset. 

There are a number of elements to consider when you start:

Is your organisation and clinical team ready to implement shared decision making?

Implementing shared decision making is easier when it aligns with the organisation’s priorities and you can tap into its systems and resources. Within clinical teams, a common understanding of shared decision making and commitment to implementation are key steps to implementation.

Find more about how to assess how prepared your organisation and team are to implement shared decision making.

Have you identified a core team and other key roles?

If you are implementing shared decision making across more than one team, a core team, Board-level support and a clinical champion are needed to design the programme, oversee its implementation and support it until it is permanently embedded in the care pathway. 

Find out more about the key roles that help implement shared decision making across teams.

Have you worked out who needs to be involved and how you will engage with them?

Implementing shared decision making involves everyone, from the health professionals on the team to the receptionists on the front desk. Getting their buy-in and getting the early stages of implementation right is key. Involving patient, families and patient representatives, wider multidisciplinary team and the exec team or Board also creates the right environment for success.

Find out more about how to identify and involve key your stakeholders

Have you got a clear plan?

Having a clear project plan ensures the objectives and how they will be achieved are clearly articulated and shared.  Sites working on the MAGIC programme developed a template project plan setting out some common objectives and key activities in implementing shared decision making.

How will you build buy-in from the wider service, organisation or practice?

As the shared decision making programme gets underway you will have already identified clinical champions and clinical areas to start work in but also need to generate awareness in general across the organisation and also plan to raise awareness in patients and the public. 

All resources on shared decision making