An Our Voice Citizen’s Jury on Shared Decision Making

An Our Voice Citizen’s Jury on Shared Decision Making


A Citizen’s Jury brings together a group of between 12 and 25 members of the public who are usually chosen at random. They talk about an issue, share ideas and come up a series of recommendations. As part of the Our Voice framework, the Scottish Health Council is working in partnership with the Chief Medical Officer, the Scottish Government and independent facilitators, Shared Future, to establish an Our Voice Citizens’ Jury. The Jury will consider the topic of realistic medicine – specifically shared decision making. Realistic medicine encourages shared decision-making about your care and is about moving away from the “doctor knows best” culture. This means your doctor or health professional should understand what matters to you personally and what your goals are. Membership of the Jury reflects the diversity of Scotland. People join from urban and rural areas, male and female, and from different age groups and backgrounds. Citizens’ Juries have been used successfully before for other purposes and in other countries – but this is the first time that a Citizens’ Jury has been formed to discuss a healthcare topic for the Scottish Government. The Our Voice Citizens’ Jury has been asked to consider the question: “What should shared decision-making look like, and what needs to be done for this to happen?” The Jury members meet on three full days over a four-week period to discuss and deliberate on the topic. Expert witnesses can help inform the Jury and can include people who have experience of living with a health condition or receiving healthcare services – as well as policymakers and healthcare professionals. The views of Jury members will be recorded as recommendations. The Scottish Government is committed to carefully consider each of the Jury’s recommendations and reply to all of them – either with a commitment to action, or an explanation as to why that recommendation cannot be taken forward. A report on the Jury’s findings, and an evaluation of the process and impact, will follow shortly after the Jury concludes in early 2019. For more information about the Our Voice Citizens’ Jury, please follow the link.

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