Our clinical trial began in 2019 and ended in August 2022. We rigorously tested the Stanford AFib Guide at Stanford University, East Carolina University, Ochsner Medical Center, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, and Cooper Health System/Rowan University. The clinical trial, ENHANCE-AF, included diverse patient populations and a variety of health care systems.
Principal investigators Paul J. Wang, MD, and Randall S. Stafford, MD, PhD, examined the factors AFib patients consider when deciding to take anticoagulation medication. Their study focused on identifying and eliminating barriers to shared decision-making. These can include low health literacy and patients’ dissatisfaction with their previous care, and providers’ lack of cultural understanding.
To help overcome these barriers in AFib care, Drs. Wang and Stafford spearheaded the creation of this shared decision-making website. The Stanford AFib Guide website allows AFib patients to:
- Learn about AFib and the risk of stroke
- Evaluate the pros and cons of blood-thinning medications
- Take an active, informed role in decisions about their care
The Stanford AFib Guide, presents information in English or Spanish using plain language that doesn’t downplay the complex aspects of stroke prevention. Its design accommodates patient diversity in health literacy and learning styles (auditory or visual). This shared decision-making resource presents a groundbreaking approach for empowering patients for years to come.
In the future, the collaborative decision-making model can be adapted to an infinite number of health care scenarios. Shared decision-making can:
- Reduce glaring disparities in health outcomes among patients of different races, ethnicities, and geographical locations
- Improve quality of care
- Fit seamlessly into the post-pandemic health care landscape