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Patient Empowerment Experience

Scaling Up Shared Decision-Making, USA

The Health Decision Sciences Centre at Massachusetts General Hospital has created a streamlined process whereby doctors in primary and secondary care can ‘prescribe’ a patient decision aid through their electronic medical record. The patient can then access the tool outside of the consultation to facilitate better-shared decision making.

Respectful Maternity Care, Nepal, and Nigeria

A national standard across Nigeria and Nepal, this approach centers on using real-life experiences of mothers to challenge professional mindsets and create an impetus for front-line teams to improve services. One NHS trust has already successfully adopted it following failures in care.

Participatory Women’s Groups, Bangladesh, India, Malawi, and Nepal

Participatory learning and action groups empower local women to identify health problems around childbirth, then find and implement their own solutions. Results across over 100,000 births showed dramatic reductions in maternal and neonatal mortality.

Care Companion project, India

India’s largest cardiac hospital is training patients’ carers through a program of teaching, certification and hands-on work on the ward during the patient’s stay at the hospital. This gives carers the skills to better look after their family member when back at home.

Patient held records, Denmark and Malawi

Using e-records or paper, some countries are turning the relationship of patients to their data on its head, giving partial or complete ownership of medical records to the individual.

Just Ask Campaign, Denmark

Denmark created a program to drive population-wide change in the relationship between patients and professionals. This involved mass distribution of tools supporting and prompting patients to ask more questions and overcome ‘white coat silence’.

TASO, Uganda

TASO serves around 100,000 Ugandans with HIV per year through a network of 11 patient-run HIV/AIDS service centers around the country. Their ‘expert clients’ manage drug distribution, conduct home visits and educate other patients on better managing their condition and improving livelihoods.

Patient First Ambassadors, Australia

Designed to create a step-change in patient understanding of their rights, responsibilities, and ability to make informed choices, volunteer patients were recruited and trained to discuss these aspects of care with their peers on outpatient wards.


Patient empowerment: for better quality, more sustainable health services globally, A report by the All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Global Health

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