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Modified Delphi survey for the evidence summarisation of patient decision aids: Study protocol
  1. Marie-Anne Durand1,
  2. Michelle D Dannenberg1,
  3. Catherine H Saunders1,
  4. Anik M C Giguere2,
  5. Brian S Alper3,4,
  6. Tammy Hoffmann5,
  7. Lily Perestelo-Pérez6,
  8. Stephen T Campbell7,
  9. Glyn Elwyn8
  1. 1The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, Dartmouth College, Lebanon, New Hampshire, USA
  2. 2Universite Laval Faculte de medecine, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
  3. 3DynaMed Plus, EBSCO Health, Ipswich, Massachusetts, USA
  4. 4Family and Community Medicine, University of Missouri Columbia School of Medicine, Columbia, Missouri, USA
  5. 5Bond University, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
  6. 6Evaluation Unit of the Canary Islands Health Service, El Rosario, UK
  7. 7Dartmouth College Geisel School of Medicine, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
  8. 8Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Marie-Anne Durand; marie-anne.durand{at}


Introduction Information included in a patient decision aid (PDA) can significantly influence patients’ decisions and is, therefore, expected to be evidence-based and rigorously selected and summarised. PDA developers have not yet agreed on a standardised process for the selection and summarisation of the supporting evidence. We intend to generate consensus on a process (and related steps and criteria) for selecting and summarising evidence for PDAs using a modified Delphi survey.

Methods and analysis We will develop an evidence summarisation process specific to PDA development by using a consensus-based Delphi approach, surveying international experts and stakeholders with two to three rounds. To increase generalisability and acceptability, we will distribute the survey to the following stakeholder groups: PDA developers, researchers with expertise in shared decision making, PDA development and evidence summarisation, members of the International Patient Decision Aids Standards (IPDAS) collaboration, policy makers with expertise in PDA certification and patient stakeholder groups. For each criterion, if at least 80% of survey participants rank the criterion as most important/least important, we will consider that consensus has been achieved.

Ethics and dissemination It is critical for PDAs to have accurate and trustworthy evidence-based information about the risks and benefits of health treatments and tests, as these decision aids help patients make important choices. We want to generate consensus on an approach for selecting and summarising the evidence included in PDAs, which can be widely implemented by PDA developers. Dartmouth College’s Committee for the Protection of Human Subjects approved this protocol. We will publish our results in a peer reviewed journal.

  • decision making
  • delphi technique
  • patient preference
  • patient-centered care
  • surveys and questionnaires

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  • Contributors M-AD, GE and MDD planned and designed the study. CHS, AG, BSA, TH, LP-P and STC provided advice and guidance on the design. M-AD drafted the manuscript and all authors contributed to writing and approved the final draft of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests GE and M-A Durand have developed the Option Grid patient decision aids, and EBSCO Information Services sells subscription access to Option Grid patient decision aids. They receive consulting income from EBSCO Health, and may receive royalties in the future. GE and M-A Durand are consultant for ACCESS Community Health Network. BSA is employed full-time by EBSCO Information Services which is a for-profit company that publishes patient decision aids.

  • Ethics approval Dartmouth College’s Committee for the Protection of Human Subjects approved this protocol.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.