‘MAGIC’ question cards to give patients more control of their care

‘MAGIC’ question cards to give patients more control of their care

16th December 2014

Patients in West Leicestershire are being encouraged to ask clinicians more questions about their healthcare.

They are being invited to enter into a discussion with their GP, consultant or other health professionals about the options available, and reach a decision together.

And to help start the conversation, West Leicestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), in collaboration with Healthwatch Leicestershire, have published special cards with the five key questions for patients to ask. The aim is that patients will be able to take more control over the choices involved in their healthcare when they have all the information they need.

The postcard-size cue cards carry the title ‘MAGIC’, which stands for ‘Making All Good (decisions) In Collaboration’. They are available in all 50 GP practices in the North West Leicestershire, Charnwood, and Hinckley and Bosworth areas as well as being distributed by Healthwatch.

Professor Mayur Lakhani, Chair of West Leicestershire CCG, said: “We need to show that the principle of ‘no decision about me without me’ can be part of everyday healthcare. These simple MAGIC cards are a reminder to patients - and to GPs, consultants and other health professionals - that decisions about healthcare need to be made together.

“A diagnosis can sometimes be a difficult time for patients and their families, who may be concerned about the future and feel confused. They will be able to cope better if they have more information and know the right questions to ask.”

There are five questions on the MAGIC cue cards:

  1. “What is my diagnosis – could it be something else?”
  2. “What are my treatment options”
  3. “What are the pros and cons of my treatment options – do you have the facts and figures to help me decide?”
  4. “What can I do to help myself and manage my condition?”
  5. “I would like to talk about my prognosis – what can I expect and what is likely to happen in the future?” 

The MAGIC cue cards have been supported by Healthwatch Leicestershire, the patients’ watchdog organisation. Healthwatch Chair, Rick Moore, said: “Clinicians must be able to help patients to make informed personal decisions, and motivate people to take actions about their health and healthcare. These cards help uphold patients’ rights to know more and to take greater  control over the real choices about their healthcare.

“We know people want these choices. They want to be active participants in their health, be listened to and have their preferences considered. Research shows that with the right support and information, patients generally choose the most cost-effective treatments, are more motivated to take advice and follow treatment plans and ultimately have better health.”