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Personal Care Association - Arts en Auto

Personal Care Association – Arts en Auto

Standards, guidelines and protocols form the backbone of healthcare. Doctors must adhere to this. However, the standardization of medical procedures belies the fact that every patient is different. The New Personal Care Association wants to take care of this. A good reason to ask two questions and five statements to medical sociologist and healthcare researcher Dr. Nico van Wert, one of the founders of this association.

1) What is going wrong in healthcare that makes creating your own community necessary?

Too often we see that standard treatment is applied without adequate consideration of personal factors and circumstances. Research shows that practitioners often do not know the treatment goals of their patients. There is still a world to be won for the patient.

2) Your website states: “The association aims to promote and improve personal care.” My first reaction was: then we have to go back to a time before mandatory standards and guidelines, which were (also) “imposed” by disciplinary boards and health insurance companies.

We are not calling for retreat. Standards and guidelines provide guidance. However, you will have to determine if they are applicable to an individual case and how to apply them to provide optimal care in a particular case. This goes back to the principles of evidence medicine but has been neglected in practice. For example, it was shown that in a group of older oncology patients, more than a quarter did not benefit from the surgical procedure that was indicated according to the Tumor Working Group.

3) For many doctors, good care means acting in accordance with standards, guidelines, and protocols. Deviating from this may be beneficial for the patient, but doctors are treading on thin ice.

A good professional is never a slave to guidelines. This would not be in the patient’s interest, and this interest, of course, must come first. Fortunately, healthcare professionals are finding the courage to do the right thing and a way not to do it recklessly. An example of the latter is having a colleague monitor another discipline.

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4) Standards and guidelines are becoming more precise. The individual patient is increasingly taken into account. What does your community add to this?

But here's the thing: the combination of care personalization possibilities that presents itself! We adopt strict guidelines. We support taking joint decisions seriously. Use decision aids. Also use tools to set treatment goals. Use insights from other disciplines and professions. You don't have to invent your entire approach yourself: build on what others offer. We advocate for this among healthcare professionals and healthcare organizations and help by discussing personal healthcare practices with each other and distributing ideas and materials.

5) Your Society writes: When treating a patient, genetic, microbial and systemic factors such as allergies, comorbidity, socio-economic and cultural factors, lifestyle, age, living environment etc. must be taken into account, even with artificial intelligence this seems an unattainable ideal.

Anyone can start with the steps that will maximize the benefit for their patient group. It also helps to bring together issues from different disciplines (which are often already included). And if you embrace the patient-related outcomes that a personalized approach produces in your practice, you can improve your approach.

6) The Personalized Care Association wants “care that is actively and routinely tailored to the patient's needs, preferences and values.” But apart from the fact that “patients considering developments in personal care” can become members for 150 euros per year, they are not patients on the site and in the activities.

Experimental expertise is part of the association's DNA. Experience of living with illness and benefiting from care exists among a large proportion of our members, and this provides valuable input for reflection and dialogue. Three experienced experts contributed to the preparation of the technical report*. They also frequently participate in our meetings and contribute their expertise. There is also the occasional participation of experienced experts: sometimes as speakers by invitation, sometimes as an interested party through open registration. Each presentation to a personal care practice addresses the patients' perspective and the way in which this is included in developments. We also want to understand this clearly in our dialogue after the presentations and carry it over to other practices/our own practices. The association also brings together the views of healthcare professionals and experts with other viewpoints, such as those of administrators and insurance companies.

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7) The association is also registered with the Chamber of Commerce as a “Personalized Healthcare Association”, the vision is set out in the “White Paper”, the members who form the core are called “Founding Members”, and only members are allowed to codify “Inspiring Healthcare Practices” and “Practical Solutions “…This gives a somewhat elitist, unfriendly impression to the doctor and patient.

Personal Care Association membership is open to everyone. Part of our exchange is linked to membership and part is through open enrollment or public media. This is common, and not unfriendly. If we unintentionally come across as unfriendly, we must do something about it.

*A PDF of this can be found at Community website