Choosing Wisely: Cardiothoracic Surgeons Partnering with Patients to Make Good Health Care Decisions

Review of Cardiothoracic surgeons Choosing Wisely Top 5 list.

Choosing Wisely is an initiative focused on helping physicians to be better stewards of finite health care resources and encouraging physicians and patients to discuss appropriate medical decision making. The principles focus on the imperative of helping physicians and other stakeholders make wise, evidence-based decisions that simultaneously promote high-quality care, and also assure sustainability of the health care system. Patients are engaged in partnership with Consumer Reports, who have promoted Choosing Wisely as “educating consumers about appropriate care.” Variability in health care and a quest for safety and value have highlighted the perils associated with overuse or misuse of procedures and tests, and an appreciation of the unintended consequences of patient harm and increased costs.

The initiative originated from a physician charter on medical professionalism published in 2002 and subsequently endorsed by more than 130 medical professional societies that articulates commitment to improving access to high-quality health care, and advocates for a just and cost-effective management of finite health care resources The Promoting Good Stewardship in Medicine project piloted by the National Physicians Alliance was funded in 2009 by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation’s “Putting the Charter into Practice” grant. The initial project resulted in three lists of five specific steps that physicians in internal medicine, family medicine, and pediatrics could utilize in their practice to encourage effective use of health care resources. This original campaign evolved into the multiple-year Choosing Wisely initiative in which the ABIM Foundation reached out to specialty societies to identify a list of five tests or procedures that may be overused or misused.

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