Boss RD, Donohue PK, Roter DL, Larson SM, Arnold RM. "This is a decision you have to make": using simulation to study prenatal counseling. Simul Healthc. 2012 Aug;7(4):207-12.
(Decision-Making, Prenatal, Standardized Patients, United States)
INTRODUCTION: Prenatal decision making during extremely preterm labor is challenging for parents and physicians. Ethical and logistical concerns have limited empirical descriptions of physician counseling behaviors in this setting and constricted opportunities for communication training. This pilot study examines how simulation might be used to engage neonatologists in reflecting on their usual prenatal counseling behaviors. METHODS: Neonatology physicians counseled a couple (standardized patients) with the female patient having impending delivery at 23 3/7 weeks. Encounters were videotaped. Physicians completed post encounter surveys and debriefing interviews. Mixed-methods analysis explored the outcomes of clinical verisimilitude and counseling behaviors. RESULTS: All 10 neonatology physicians found that the simulation was highly realistic and that their behaviors paralleled neonatologist self-report in other studies. Physicians contributed more than 80% of encounter dialogue and mostly focused on biomedical information related to the acute perinatal period. Physicians spent nearly a quarter of each encounter in building relationships and expressing empathy. Most physicians initiated discussion about quality versus quantity of life but infrequently elicited the parents' related goals and values. When medical factors and family preferences were held constant, physicians assumed variable responsibility for making decisions about resuscitation. Most physicians declined parent requests for treatment recommendations, although all of those physicians felt more than 75% certain about what should be done. CONCLUSIONS: Simulation can reproduce the decisional context of prenatal counseling for extremely premature labor. These results have implications for communication training in any setting where physicians and patients without established relationships must discuss acute diagnoses and make high-stakes medical decisions.
Castillo EG, Pincus HA, Wieland M, Roter D, Larson S, Houck P, Reynolds CF, Cruz M. Communication profiles of psychiatric residents and attending physicians in medication-management appointments: a quantitative pilot study. Acad Psychiatry. 2012 Mar 1;36(2):96-103.
(Decision-Making, Mental Health, United States)
OBJECTIVE: The authors quantitatively examined differences in psychiatric residents' and attending physicians' communication profiles and voice tones. METHODS: Audiotaped recordings of 49 resident-patient and 35 attending-patient medication-management appointments at four ambulatory sites were analyzed with the Roter Interaction Analysis System (RIAS). Nonparametric tests were used to compare differences in proportions of speech devoted to relationship-building, activating, and partnering in decision-making processes, and data-gathering/counseling/patient education. Differences in affect expressed by psychiatrists' voice tones were also examined. RESULTS: Residents' visits were twice as long as Attendings' visits (28.2 versus 14.1 minutes), and residents devoted a significantly greater proportion of their talk to relationship-building (23% versus 20%) and activating/partnering (36% versus 28%) aspects of communication, whereas Attendings devoted a greater proportion to biomedically-related data-gathering/counseling/patient education (31% versus 20%). Analysis of voice tones revealed that residents were perceived as sounding significantly friendlier and more sympathetic, versus Attendings, who were rated as sounding more dominant and rushed. CONCLUSION: These findings show distinct communication profiles and voice-tone differences. Future psychiatric communication research should address the influence of appointment length, psychiatrist/patient characteristics, and other potential confounders on psychiatrist-patient communication.
Kim YM, Kols A, Martin A, Silva D, Rinehart W, Prammawat S, Johnson S, Church K. Promoting informed choice: evaluating a decision-making tool for family planning clients and providers in Mexico. Int Fam Plan Perspect. 2005 Dec;31(4):162-71.
(Family Planning, Decision-Making, Mexico)
CONTEXT: The World Health Organization (WHO) has developed a decision-making tool to be used by providers and clients during family planning visits to improve the quality of services. It is important to examine the tool's usability and its impact on counseling and decision-making processes during family planning consultations. METHODS: Thirteen providers in Mexico City were videotaped with family planning clients three months before and one month after attending a training session on the WHO decision-making tool. The videotapes were coded for client-provider communication and eye contact, and decision-making behaviors were rated. In-depth interviews and focus group discussions explored clients' and providers' opinions of the tool. RESULTS: After providers began using the decision-making tool, they gave clients more information on family planning, tailored that information more closely to clients' situations and more often discussed HIV/AIDS prevention, dual protection and condom use. Client involvement in the decision-making process and client active communication increased, contributing to a shift from provider-dominated to shared decision making. Clients reported that the tool helped them understand the provider's explanations and made them feel more comfortable talking and asking questions during consultations. After one month of practice with the decision-making tool, most providers felt comfortable with it and found it useful; however, they recommended some changes to the tool to help engage clients in the decision-making process. CONCLUSIONS: The decision-making tool was useful both as a job aid for providers and as a decision aid for clients.
Kim YM, Kols A, Bonnin C, Richardson P, Roter D. Client communication behaviors with health care providers in Indonesia. Patient Educ Couns 2001 Oct;45(1):59-68.
Patient participation in health care consultations can improve the quality of decision making and increase patients' commitment to the treatment plan. This study examines client participation, operationally defined as client active communication, during family planning consultations in Indonesia. Data were collected on 1203 consultations in the provinces of East Java and Lampung. Sessions were audiotaped and the conversation coded using an adaptation of the Roter Interaction Analysis System (RIAS). Culturally acceptable ways for Indonesian clients to participate in consultations include asking questions, requesting clarification, stating opinions, and expressing concerns. Factors significantly associated with client active communication were, in order of importance, providers' information giving, providers' facilitative communication, providers' expressions of negative emotion, client educational level, and province. The latter suggests the influence of culture on client participation. The results suggest that a combination of provider training and client education on key communication skills could increase client participation in health care consultations.
Kumar R, Korthuis PT, Saha S, Chander G, Sharp V, Cohn J, Moore R, Beach MC. Decision-making role preferences among patients with HIV: associations with patient and provider characteristics and communication behaviors. J Gen Intern Med. 2010 Jun;25(6):517-23. Epub 2010 Feb 24.
(Decision-making, HIV/AIDS, United States)
BACKGROUND: A preference for shared decision-making among patients with HIV has been associated with better health outcomes. One possible explanation for this association is that patients who prefer a more active role in decision-making are more engaged in the communication process during encounters with their providers. Little is known, however, about patient and provider characteristics or communication behaviors associated with patient decision-making preferences in HIV settings. OBJECTIVE: We examined patient and provider characteristics and patient-provider communication behaviors associated with the decision-making role preferences of patients with HIV. DESIGN: Cross-sectional analysis of patient and provider questionnaires and audio recorded clinical encounters from four sites. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 45 providers and 434 of their patients with HIV. MEASURES: Patients were asked how they prefer to be involved in the decision-making process (doctor makes all/most decisions, patients and doctors share decisions, or patients make decisions alone). Measures of provider and patient communication behaviors were coded from audio recordings using the Roter Interaction Analysis System. MAIN RESULTS: Overall, 72% of patients preferred to share decisions with their provider, 23% wanted their provider to make decisions, and 5% wanted to make decisions themselves. Compared to patients who preferred to share decisions with their provider, patients who preferred their provider make decisions were less likely to be above the age of 60 (ARR 0.09, 95% CI 0.01-0.89) and perceive high quality provider communication about decision-making (ARR 0.41, 95% CI 0.23-0.73), and more likely to have depressive symptoms (ARR 1.92, 95% CI 1.07-3.44). There was no significant association between patient preferences and measures of provider or patient communication behavior. CONCLUSION: Observed measures of patient and provider communication behavior were similar across all patient decision-making role preferences, indicating that it may be difficult for providers to determine these preferences based solely on communication behavior. Engaging patients in open discussion about decision-making preferences may be a more effective approach.
Langewitz WA, Loeb Y, Nübling M, Hunziker S. From patient talk to physician notes-Comparing the content of medical interviews with medical records in a sample of outpatients in Internal Medicine. Patient Educ Couns. 2009 Sep;76(3):336-40. Epub 2009 Jun 26.
(Primary Care, Medical Records, Decision-making, Switzerland)
OBJECTIVES: An increasing number of consultations are delivered in group practices, where a stable 1:1 relationship between patient and physician cannot be guaranteed. Therefore, correct documentation of the content of a consultation is crucial to hand over information from one health care professional to the next. METHODS: We randomly selected 20 interviews from a series of 56 videotaped consultations with patients requesting a general check-up exam in the outpatient department of Internal Medicine at the University Hospital Basel. All patients actively denied having any symptoms or specific health concerns at the time they made their appointment. Videotapes were analysed with the Roter Interaction Analysis System (RIAS). Corresponding physician notes were analysed with a category check-list that contained the information related items from RIAS. RESULTS: Interviews contained a total of 9.002 utterances and lasted between 15 and 53min (mean duration: 37min). Patient-centred communication (Waiting, Echoing, Mirroring, Summarising) in the videos significantly correlated with the amount of information presented by patients: medical information (r=.57; p=.009), therapeutic information (r=.50; p=.03), psychosocial information (r=.41; p=.07), life style information (r=.52; p=.02), and with the sum of patient information (r=.64; p=.003). Even though there was a significant correlation between the amount of information from the video and information in physician's notes in some categories (patient gives medical information; Pearson's r=.45; p=.05, patient gives psychosocial information; Pearson's r=.49; p=.03), an inspection of the regression lines shows that a large extent of patient information is omitted from the charts. Physicians never discussed with patients whether information should be documented in the charts or omitted. CONCLUSIONS: The use of typical patient-centred techniques increases information gathered from patients. Physicians document only a small percentage of patient information in the charts, their 'condensing heuristic' is not shared with patients. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: Patient involvement should be advocated not only to medical decision making but also to the way physicians document the content of a consultation. It is a joint responsibility of patient and health care professional to decide, which information should be kept and thus be communicated to another health care professional in future consultations.
van den Brink-Muinen A, van Dulmen SM, de Haes HC, Visser AP, Schellevis FG, Bensing JM. Has patients' involvement in the decision-making process changed over time? Health Expect. 2006 Dec;9(4):333-42.
OBJECTIVE: To get insight into the changes over time of patients' involvement in the decision-making process, and into the factors contributing to patients' involvement and general practitioners' (GPs) communication related to the Medical Treatment Act (MTA) issues: information about treatment, other available treatments and side-effects; informed decision making; asking consent for treatment. BACKGROUND: Societal developments have changed the doctor-patient relationship recently. Informed decision making has become a central topic. Patients' informed consent was legalized by the MTA (1995). DESIGN: Data of two cross-sectional studies, the First (1987) and Second (2001) Dutch National Survey of General Practice, were compared. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: General practice consultations; 16 GPs and 442 patients in 1987; 142 GPs and 2784 patients in 2001. METHODS: Consultations were videotaped and rated using Roter's Interaction Analysis System and observer questionnaires; pre- and post-consultation patient questionnaires; and GP questionnaires. Descriptive analyses and multivariate, multilevel analysis were applied. MAIN RESULTS: Most patients reported to have received the information they had considered as important prior to the consultation. There were discrepancies in involvement in treatment decisions and in giving information about other available treatments, side-effects and risks. GPs who were more affective and gave more information, more often involved their patients, especially younger patients, in decision making. In 2001, more informed decision making was observed and the GPs asked consent for a treatment more often, but they less often asked for the patients' understanding. CONCLUSION: Patients' involvement in decision making has increased over time, but not in every respect. However, this does not apply for all patients, especially the older ones. It should be questioned whether they are willing or capable to be involved and if so, how they could be encouraged.
Resources by Subject Area
Following are abstracts of RIAS studies through 2012, listed by subject area. Click on the subject name below to go directly to that section.
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Outside Primary Care