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Realistic conversations - shared decision making in practice


Shared decision-making is a framework for having conversations with people that recognises that there are two experts - the professional who is expert in the care and options available; and the person receiving care, who is expert in their life and knows their priorities for the future.

Realistic Medicine

Shared decision-making is one of the founding principles of the practice of Realistic Medicine and is at the heart of delivering careful and kind care. As health and care professionals we want to provide the right care to the right people at the right time. In order to do this, we need to treat each person as an individual and ensure that we find out what matters to them.  We can then provide personalised care that is meaningful and valuable.

The learning product

NES has developed an e-learning module called “Realistic Conversations – shared decision-making in practice” that is suitable for all health and care professionals. It provides a foundation in the skills, terminology and evidence base for shared decision-making, as well as practical hints and tips that you can use in practice today.

The benefits

On completion of this module, you will be to:

  • describe what shared decision-making is and why it is important,
  • understand what that barriers might be to sharing decision,
  • structure a realistic conversation and
  • be able to discuss the concept of risk more confidently.

Shared decision-making is expected to be the standard approach that health and care professionals adopt when interacting with people accessing health and care service in Scotland. This module will help you reflect on and improve your skills in Realistic Conversations.

Further information can be obtained via the Turas Learn link below

nurse speaking with patient