NHS England publishes Decision Support Tools to support shared decision makings related to MSK conditions.

NHS England has developed a suite of eight Decision support Tools (DST) to support people and clinicians to hold a shared decision making conversation. Each decision support tools outlines the condition, possible treatment options and associated risks. Four of these DSTs will support decisions related to MSK conditions:

Making a decision about Dupuytren’s contracture
Making a decision about Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)
Making a decision about hip osteoarthritis
Making a decision about knee osteoarthritis

Decision Support Tools are a key enabler for shared decision making (SDM). They are useful tools that support healthcare professionals and patients to work together to understand the benefits and harms of the available options and to choose and implement a decision that is informed by evidence and individual patients’ preferences. These new DSTs have been coproduced with patients and clinicians, including involvement with people low levels of health literacy.

The aim is that these DSTs will support people and clinicians to make better decisions, reduce post decisional regret and optimise experience and outcomes of care.

“If properly implemented these new Decision Support Tools will enable clinicians to support people with knee and hip osteoarthritis to make better decisions on the right approach for them, at any given time.” – Dr Benjamin Ellis, Senior Clinical Policy Adviser, Versus Arthritis. 

NHSE/I will be working over the coming months to promote the resources to healthcare professionals and offer training in how to use them. Clinical leadership and support will be a key factor in implementing the DSTs and ensuring they have the desired impact. NHSE/I will continue to develop new DSTs over the coming months in support of their commitment to expand the shared decision making programme.

“Helping people to understand their problems and the full menu of evidence-based treatment available – whether that is through medication, creams, injections or surgery – is more important now than ever whilst hundreds of thousands of patients await years for joint replacement surgery.” – Dr Benjamin Ellis, Senior Clinical Policy Adviser, Versus Arthritis.

NHSE/I welcomes any feedback you have on the DSTs, and would be grateful if you could complete a short questionnaire and encourage your networks to do so too.

If you have any questions or require further information please contact England.pcgdecisionsupporttools@nhs.net

We are honoured to be joined by:

•    Dr Chloe Stewart, Health Psychologist, National Specialist Clinical Advisor in Personalised Care/MSK, NHS England and Improvement
•    Dr Benjamin Ellis, Senior Clinical Policy Adviser, Versus Arthritis
•    Sue Brown, CEO,  Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA)

at the NOA Annual Members’ Conference 2022 on 19th October 2022 who will be sharing further information on this topic delivering a session on ‘The Value of Shared Decision Making’ exploring the 2 stage decision making.

For more information on the programme and speakers please visit the NOA Annual Members’ Conference 2022 pages.

Useful resources: