Successful medical care requires active teamwork between the patient (and family as appropriate) and the medical provider.  An informed and engaged patient is the key to a successful outcome and patient satisfaction. The care team – patient partnership is vital to this and is based upon mutual respect, open communication, and trust.

This two part series on Shared Medical Provider-Patient Responsibilities will explore the benefits of care team – patient engagement.  In this first part we will explore the care team – patient relationship and what the responsibilities of that relationship are.  We hope this will further our mission at Shingletown Medical Center to advance the highest quality health care.  We believe that shared care team-patient responsibility in medical care is an essential ingredient for a successful health outcome and patient satisfaction.  Data suggests that patients who share responsibility for their medical care have the best outcomes.

This does not suggest that both the care team and patient have the same responsibilities.  Providers are responsible for providing heath care services to the patients to the best of their ability.  Patients are responsible for communicating and participating in their health care decisions.  Patients are also responsible for following their treatment programs.

The primary care team places the patient’s safety and well-being above all other considerations, keeps the patient informed about her/his condition and treatment, and advocates for the patient’s best interests.

In order to provide this the care team gains education, technical and professional skills.  This is done through continued education and training during their professional career.

The patient has similar duties.  The goal of shared decision making is an informed patient acting on well-thought-out choices.  For the patient, with using their own judgement and free choice come a number of responsibilities.

The patient should provide complete and truthful information, express any concerns, request information or clarification and engage actively in understanding and decision making.

Next week we will examine the Shared Decision Making Responsibilities. 

The staff at Shingletown Medical Center is proud to provide first-class care for you and your family.