Background: Although research has suggested that patients desire to participate in shared decision-making, recent studies show that most patients take a passive role in their treatment decisions. The discrepancy between patients' expressed desire and actual behaviors underscores the need to better understand how patients perceive shared decision-making and what factors influence their participation. Aims: To investigate patients' preferences and appraisals of their involvement in treatment decisions. Methods: Fifty-four qualitative interviews were conducted with veterans receiving outpatient mental health care at a U.S. Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Interviews were analyzed using thematic analysis. Results: Participants outlined several factors that influence their preferences and involvement in treatment decisions. These include the patient-provider relationship, fear of being judged, perceived inadequacy, and a history of substance abuse. Conclusion: Patients' preferences and willingness to engage in shared decision-making fluctuate over time and are context dependent. A better understanding of these factors and a strong patient-provider relationship will facilitate better measurement and implementation of shared decision-making.
- Mental health
- Patient's preferences and participation
- Shared decision-making
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health