Past Projects

DECISION AIDS

Managing Expectations for Acute Low Back Pain Study (MAPS)

Making decisions about treatment of acute low back pain (ALBP) can be challenging for both clinicians and patients.  In 2013, the HDSC and the MGH back pain care redesign team received a Clinical Innovation Award to examine shared decision making in the management of acute low back pain (ALBP) with three urgent care clinics. Practice guidelines were developed to support physicians in the treatment of back pain; however, patients also need to be informed about what ALBP is and what treatment options are available. This project evaluated the integration of an acute low back pain patient decision aid in urgent care settings at MGH.

Funding provided by MGH Clinical Innovation Award

Evaluation of a Patient Decision Aid on Liability Protection

We conducted a series of focus groups to evaluate the decisions of potential jurors in scenarios where a patient had an adverse obstetric outcome, and to test if the use of a decision aid when choosing between a trial of labor or a repeat cesarean after a prior cesarean, reduces medical liability exposure.

Funding provided by Healthwise

 

DECISION QUALITY

Making Orthopedic Referrals Enhanced with Technology and Education study (MORE)

The decision to have treatment for hip and knee osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, or herniated disc is dependent on many factors. In 2013, the HDSC was awarded a grant from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation to understand how patients make treatment decisions for these four conditions. Through this grant, we were able to successfully determine how we can reliably integrate decisions into routine orthopedic care to promote shared decision making. This study evaluated the impact of the care redesign initiatives by examining the quality of the decision-making process for patients considering surgical and non-surgical treatment options.

Funding provided by The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

 

TRAINING

Resident Skills Training

With funding from the Picker Institute and the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, the SDM team developed and delivered a workshop, during a regularly scheduled ambulatory curriculum rotation, to introduce internal medicine residents to shared decision making concepts, give them practice in shared decision making skills, and demonstrate the use of a simple tool to facilitate shared decision making in common clinical encounters. One hundred thirty internal medicine and medicine-pediatrics residents attended 8 workshops over a 4-month period.  The training workshop for internal medicine residents was rated highly by attendees and the majority stated they would change their practice based on what they learned.

Funding provided by The Gold Foundation

Depression and Diabetes Mental Health Initiative

The Alice Rosenwald Mental Health Integration Initiative funded the Mental Health Initiative (MHI) project from January 2015 – December 2016. This project was based in the Internal Medicine Associates (IMA), an adult primary care practice located within the main campus of MGH. The goal of the MHI project was to build on an existing Depression Care (“D-Care”) Initiative at MGH to enhance screening for depression in patients and to improve collaborative management of depression care between primary care teams and behavioral health experts. The MHI program focused on diabetic patients, as studies have shown this population has high rates of depression. The MHI team provided training to medical staff at all levels (including medical assistants and registered nurses). These sessions covered skills such as health coaching, motivational interviewing, shared decision making, and training in behavioral activation for depression care.

Funding provided by Alice Rosenwald Mental Health Integration Initiative