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Using decision aids

Overview of decision aids


Decision aids are evidence-based sources of health information that can help people make informed treatment decisions.


Decision aids are a part of a shared decision-making process, encouraging active participation by people in their healthcare decisions. They have been developed to make it easier for people and healthcare professionals to discuss treatment options.


In several overseas countries, such as Canada, the US and parts of Europe, organisations have developed a range of sophisticated electronic and paper-based tools that are underpinned by evidence-based algorithms. Some of these tools can be useful in New Zealand, but their usefulness can be limited due to lack of alignment with New Zealand treatment guidelines and protocols.   


Decision aids and resources that help shared decision making


Below are some decision aids and resources that can be used in the New Zealand healthcare setting.

Kidney disease




Managing heart health risk

The Heart Foundation has a range of resources designed to support a conversation about changes people can make to reduce their heart health risk. Many of these resources are available in a range of different languages.


Generic personal decision guide

  • The Ottawa personal decision guide (pdf) is a template to help people who are making health or social decisions weigh up their options, considering their own values, knowledge, support and certainty around the decision they are making.

Health Navigator

  • Health Navigator is a source of up-to-date, accurate New Zealand health information. The Health A-Z can be easily searched to provide a quick reference about conditions and treatments that you can share with the people you are working with.


Overseas organisations with decision aid resources


Further reading

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