Review: healthcare decision aids improve knowledge, decrease decisional conflict, and increase active participation
QUESTION: Do decision aids (interventions providing information on options and outcomes designed to help people make specific and deliberate choices related to their health) used as adjuncts to counselling by healthcare practitioners, improve decision making and outcomes for people making treatment or screening decisions?
Studies were identified by searching Medline (1966 to April 1998), EMBASE/Excerpta Medica (1980 to November 1998), PsycINFO (1979 to March 1998), CINAHL (1983 to February 1998), Aidsline (1980–98), CancerLit (1983 to April 1998), Cochrane Library (1998, Issue 4), personal files, and 3 healthcare journals.
Randomised controlled trials were selected if decision aids were compared with controls or alternative interventions and participants were >14 years of age and were making healthcare choices about treatment and screening. Studies were excluded that used hypothetical situations or choices about lifestyle, participation in a clinical trial, advance directives, general education, or compliance issues.