It is sometimes difficult to understand complex medical information but for patients with AFib, it can be especially difficult. If a patient decides to take drugs then the patient and doctor need to have a conversation on what specific drugs to take.
In June 2018, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) https://www.pcori.org and the American Heart Association (AHA) https://www.heart.org have make $5 million available to establish a center to support better-informed AFib treatment decisions. This initiative the “AHA-PCORI Decision-making and Choices to Inform Dialogue and Empower” Center is referred to as the AHA-PCORI DECIDE Center.”
The PCORI-AHA DECIDE Center is part of AHA’s AFib Strategically Focused Research Network. The Network consists of six research centers to provide understanding of the biology, pathophysiology, and epidemiology of AFib, and how to develop more effective ways to treat AFib and prevent risks such as stroke.
The AHA-PCORI DECIDE Center will be based at the University of Utah to develop and test tools that will help patients with AFib have constructive conversations. The funding will enable the University of Utah in collaboration with Mayo Clinic to produce and test new decision-aids to better inform AFib treatment decisions.
”If people don’t feel engaged in the decision-making process, they are less likely to see the benefits of treatments and may not fill their prescriptions or take the medications” said, Angie Fagerlin, PhD, Director of DECIDE.
The AHA–PCORI DECIDE Center will undertake two projects with the research team to include developing and refining two types of decision aids. One aid would enable people with AFib to use the decision tool on their own before a visit with their doctor, and the other decision aid would be used by the patient when talking with their doctor.
The Center will assess the decision tools abilities when used individually by the patient and/or the decision is made with the physician to determine which oral blood thinning drugs to use to prevent stroke and which of these drugs would best align with the patients’ goals and preferences.