Shared decision-making in the ICU from the perspective of physicians, nurses and patients: a qualitative interview study
SourceBMJ Open, 11, 8, (2021), article e050134
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectRadboudumc 18: Healthcare improvement science RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 4: lnfectious Diseases and Global Health RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences
OBJECTIVE: To identify views, experiences and needs for shared decision-making (SDM) in the intensive care unit (ICU) according to ICU physicians, ICU nurses and former ICU patients and their close family members. DESIGN: Qualitative study. SETTING: Two Dutch tertiary centres. PARTICIPANTS: 19 interviews were held with 29 participants: seven with ICU physicians from two tertiary centres, five with ICU nurses from one tertiary centre and nine with former ICU patients, of whom seven brought one or two of their close family members who had been involved in the ICU stay. RESULTS: Three themes, encompassing a total of 16 categories, were identified pertaining to struggles of ICU physicians, needs of former ICU patients and their family members and the preferred role of ICU nurses. The main struggles ICU physicians encountered with SDM include uncertainty about long-term health outcomes, time constraints, feeling pressure because of having final responsibility and a fear of losing control. Former patients and family members mainly expressed aspects they missed, such as not feeling included in ICU treatment decisions and a lack of information about long-term outcomes and recovery. ICU nurses reported mainly opportunities to strengthen their role in incorporating non-medical information in the ICU decision-making process and as liaison between physicians and patients and family. CONCLUSIONS: Interviewed stakeholders reported struggles, needs and an elucidation of their current and preferred role in the SDM process in the ICU. This study signals an essential need for more long-term outcome information, a more informal inclusion of patients and their family members in decision-making processes and a more substantial role for ICU nurses to integrate patients' values and needs in the decision-making process.
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