Shared Decision-Making with Your Healthcare Provider

Being an active participant in your own healthcare is an empowering choice that can significantly impact your health; it can lead to better health outcomes, improved communication with your healthcare providers, and a greater sense of control over your health and wellbeing. 

Sharing in the Decisions 

Health care decisions can be complex, and there often is not a single right or best decision. It’s important that you have the confidence and tools you need to navigate decisions around your, or your loved ones, healthShared decision making in healthcare is a collaborative approach that involves both the patient and the healthcare provider. Sharing decisions can be particularly valuable when there are multiple treatment options, when patient preferences are important, and when the risks and benefits of the options are not straightforward. When you engage with your healthcare team in a shared decision-making approach, the benefits speak for themselves. 

Preparing to Share Decisions 

To best prepare to be an active participant in your healthcare appointments, you can take steps before, during, and after you meet with your providers. 


Before Your Appointment 


During Your Appointment 


After Your Appointment 


Bring all medicines you take to your appointment 


Write down any questions you have for the visit. Here are some questions to consider. 


Know your current medical conditions, past surgeries, and illnesses. 


Explain your symptoms, history, and any problems with medicines taken in the past. 


Ask your questions. 


Speak up if you do not understand. 


If you need a test, ask how the test is done, how you need to prepare, and how you will receive the results. 


If you need a prescription, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or nursing, have reactions to medicines, or take vitamins or supplements. 


Find out what to do next. Ask for written instructions or resources. 


Follow your doctor’s instructions. 



Call your doctor if you do not understand the instructions after you have left. 



Call your doctor if your symptoms worsen or you have difficulty following the instructions. 



Make necessary follow-up appointments. 




Decisions regarding our health, or the health of our loved ones, can feel daunting, complex, and wrapped in emotion. If you’d like to talk through healthcare decisions you’re facing, we’re here. Call us at 866-660-9533 (24/7) or reach out online.