Shared Decision Making in Mental Health Practice

8. Insight

Shared decision making is also challenged by a lack of understanding of the Mental Capacity Act and thorny terms like ‘insight’ which are often used as reasons for not sharing decisions or enabling decisions to be led by patients. Insight means – the extent to which the service user is able to...

Research on clinician’s attitudes to shared decision making suggests that whilst they say they follow its principles, they are less willing to do so when decision-making capacity is impaired.

To counterbalance this, it is important to note that service users participation in decision making is not an all or nothing situation.  Rather, it can be viewed on a continuum, which acknowledges that differing levels of support are needed by service users within the decision making process.  This does not detract from a shared approach which accounts for their preferences, wishes and goals.