The Paternalism Preference — Choosing Unshared Decision Making

A recent editorial in the NEJM – “The Paternalism Preference — Choosing Unshared Decision Making” (New England Journal of Medicine 373:7, August 13, 2015) – raises an important question. Is it possible to provide too much information to a patient or in our case, a client? Is there such a thing as information overload as it is applied to medical information? Many of our clients request or even demand a great deal of information regarding their pet’s medical conditions. In today’s electronic and highly connected world, it’s very easy to provide owners with reams of information, but are they really able to use that information wisely to make informed choices? This editorial reviews the pros and cons of such information overload and emphasizes what I believe to be the case namely that owners want you to be the doctor.

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