• MAGIC stands for ‘making good decisions in collaboration’ and looked at how to embed best practice in shared decision making.
  • Phase 1 of the programme ran from from August 2010 until January 2012. Phase 2 of the programme ran from May 2012 until the end of October 2013.
  • Worked with frontline health care professionals in various clinical settings on different ways of encouraging shared decision making and spreading learning across the health care community.
  • Worked with sites located across Newcastle and Cardiff.

Our MAGIC programme worked with frontline health professionals and their priority projects across the UK to test how to embed best practice in shared decision making and overcome the barriers to change. From the work MAGIC is doing, we discovered that positive things happen when clinicians and patients work together to make decisions, and along the way we saw attitudes and behaviours changing.

MAGIC has great potential for improving individuals’ health care experiences such as helping patients feel involved and listened to, and giving them a say in what happens to them. Getting patients engaged can bring added benefits. When patients are engaged and follow their treatment plans their health outcomes improve and resources tend to be used more effectively. Some of the ways MAGIC has been helping patients include:

  • helping men with enlarged prostate choose between taking drugs, surgery or making changes to their lifestyle (Newcastle)
  • helping women with early breast cancer choose between mastectomy and breast conserving surgery (Cardiff and Newcastle)
  • helping people with head and neck cancer choose the type and aggressiveness of treatment appropriate for them, balancing the risks and side effects with the possible benefits. (Cardiff)
  • working in general practice on antibiotic prescribing and use of generic decision-support tools for other key primary care decisions. (Cardiff and Newcastle)
  • obstetric unit: choice related to repeat caesarean section and using generic decision support tools for other key obstetric decisions. (Newcastle)


The teams used a range of approaches to tell patients and staff about the benefits of shared decision making, including:

  • information campaigns
  • short lunchtime presentations open to staff at all levels
  • sharing news and information through intranets, blogs and Twitter
  • giving training through face-to-face workshops that use role-play to enhance practical skills.