Unit II Heuristics and Biases in Healthcare Essay

  • In this unit, you learned about the different biases in decision-making. For this assignment, you will compose an essay that examines these biases. In your essay, briefly describe each of the three general heuristics covered in Chapter 3 in the textbook. Then, pick one or more of the three heuristics, and describe an original decision-making scenario that conveys how the heuristic and associated bias(es) played a part in the outcome. Explain how the biases could have been overcome to improve the decision. This scenario can be real or imagined, and it can be about personal or business decision-making events. You should not use the scenarios or examples given in the textbook. Be sure to use what you have learned about the heuristics and biases to create your scenario. In your essay, include both an introductory paragraph with a topic sentence and a conclusion. Your essay must be a minimum of three pages in length, and it must include at least two references, one of which must be the textbook and one of which must be another academic source. Any information from a source must be cited and referenced in APA format.
  • Please
    ensure that the APA format is used. Ensure that following text book is included in the answer: Bazerman,
    M. H., & Moore, D. A. (2013). Judgment in managerial decision making
    (8th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Check all work before submitting the final
    answer for plagiarism.

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Introduction: Decision-making is a critical aspect of the medical profession, where the wrong decision can have profound consequences. In this unit, we have learned about the different biases in decision-making and how they can influence judgment. This assignment requires students to examine the three general heuristics covered in Chapter 3 of the textbook and describe an original decision-making scenario that conveys how the heuristic and associated bias(es) played a part in the outcome. In this answer, we will provide guidance on how to approach this assignment.


The three general heuristics covered in Chapter 3 of the textbook are representativeness, availability, and anchoring. The representativeness heuristic refers to the tendency to make judgments based on how similar something is to a standard or a typical example. The availability heuristic is the tendency to base judgments on how easily examples come to mind. Finally, the anchoring heuristic is the tendency to rely too heavily on the first piece of information encountered when making decisions.

For this assignment, we can pick any one of these heuristics and describe an original decision-making scenario that conveys how the heuristic and associated bias(es) played a part in the outcome. Let us take the example of the representativeness heuristic.

Scenario: A medical professional is presented with a patient who has symptoms that are similar to those of a rare and life-threatening disease. While the symptoms are also similar to those of a more common and less serious illness, the medical professional is more likely to diagnose the rare disease because of its severity and the available diagnostic tests.

In this scenario, the medical professional is using the representativeness heuristic to base their judgment of the patient’s illness on how similar the symptoms are to the standard or typical example of the rare disease. The associated bias here is that the medical professional might overlook other possible diagnoses or overestimate the probability of the rare disease’s occurrence.

To overcome this bias and improve the decision-making process, the medical professional could actively seek out evidence that contradicts their initial diagnosis. They could also consider other possible diagnoses and evaluate them based on their probability and symptoms. By doing so, the medical professional would reduce their reliance on the representativeness heuristic and increase the chances of making an accurate diagnosis.

In conclusion, understanding the biases that influence decision-making is crucial in the medical profession. By studying the different heuristics and their associated biases, medical professionals can develop strategies to overcome them and make better decisions. In this assignment, students have the opportunity to apply their knowledge of heuristics and biases to a real or imaginary scenario and demonstrate their understanding of these concepts.

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