February 11, 2020

"Supported Decision-Making and Health Care: Improving Outcomes by Empowering Patients and Professionals"

Presenter: Jonathan G. Martinis, Esq., JD
Burton Blatt Institute (BBI)
Syracuse University
Senior Director for Law and Policy


  • Participants will learn the importance of self-determination for people with disabilities, including studies showing that people who exercise more self-determination have better life and health outcomes
  • Participants will learn how improved patient empowerment and enhanced communication between health care professionals and patients leads to improved health outcomes for patients and increased job satisfaction and performance for health care professionals

Participants will learn strategies for using Supported Decision-Making to enhance communication between patients and professionals, increase self-determination by patients, and improve outcomes.

Jonathan Martinis is the Senior Director for Law and Policy for the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University, leading it's efforts to ensure that older adults and people with disabilities have access to the services and supports they need to lead independent, inclusive lives.

In 2013, Jonathan represented Margaret “Jenny” Hatch in the “Justice for Jenny” case – the first trial to hold that a person has the right to use Supported Decision-Making to make her own life choices instead of being subjected to a permanent, plenary guardianship. Since then, Jonathan has led and taken part in SDM research and practice projects in Viginia, Missouri, New York, California, Vermont, Ohio, Kansas, and the District of Columbia. He has also educated and trained thousands of older adults, people with disabilities, families, and professionals across the country on SDM theory and practice.

Powerpoint Presentation

Transcript (PDF)