Readiness of hospital-based internists to embrace and discuss high-value care with patients and family members: a single-centre cross-sectional survey study
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BACKGROUND: Choosing Wisely Canada is a campaign that fosters conversations between physicians and patients about high-value health care. However, little is known about physicians' readiness to have these conversations. Our objective was to determine how ready practising internists were to embrace and openly address high-value care during conversations with patients or their families. METHODS: Practising internists in hospitals affiliated with McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, were invited to complete an electronic survey with 3 clinical scenarios: each had 3 low-value interventions that had been requested by the patient or family member. For each request, participants chose 1 of 3 statements reflecting how they would respond: a low-value statement agreeing to provide the intervention, an implicit high-value statement declining to provide the intervention without mentioning value or an explicit high-value statement declining to provide the intervention with mention of value. RESULTS: Forty-four of 62 eligible physicians (71.0% response rate) participated in the survey. High-value statements were selected in 91% of cases. The implicit high-value statement was chosen more often than the explicit high-value statement (65.7% v. 25.5% of all responses, respectively; χ2 range 4.46-56.23, p < 0.05). INTERPRETATION: Physicians favoured high-value care but frequently chose not to explicitly address value in their statements. Physicians seemed ready to embrace high-value health care practice, although they were not ready to openly discuss it with patients and their families.