At Lifeplan, we focus on fulfilling a person’s needs beyond their disability so they can lead the life they want. To deliver our disability services with high-quality support and care, we have adopted a person centred approach. It allows us to be accessible and responsive, so we can consistently meet the diverse needs of those who use our services.
But the question is – what exactly is person centred care and why is it important?
WHAT IS PERSON CENTRED CARE?
As the name suggests, person centred care puts the person at the heart of their care. It’s about catering to the needs of the person, not the service, and encouraging the individual to engage in and take an active role in their care plan. It’s important to respect that people will have their views on what’s best for them along with their values and priorities. Person centred care takes an individual’s specific needs and desires and makes them the driving force behind all decisions and quality measurements. Factors such as their goals and ambitions, family, friends and lifestyle should all be considered to develop a collaborative and flexible plan for the future.
Significant others including family, carers and other supports should also have a level of involvement in the decision-making process. As a support provider, Lifeplan’s role is to work closely and openly with families, friends, local coordinators and planners to facilitate the positive outcomes of decisions and choices.
WHAT ARE THE KEY FEATURES OF PERSON CENTRED CARE?
- The person is centre to all decisions and the planning of their care
- Significant others such as family members and friends are considered in the decision-making process
- The plan needs to reflect the person’s capacities, what is important to them, and specifies the support they require to make a valued contribution to their community
- Continual listening, learning and action from support providers to help the person get what they want out of life
WHY IS PERSON CENTRED CARE IMPORTANT?
Adopting a person centred care approach has been demonstrated to positively influence support care outcomes. Most importantly, person centred care helps individuals receive more appropriate and tailored care. However, it also brings many other benefits to individuals and support providers alike.
No one appreciates having decisions made for them without their input. Person centred care represents a shift in the traditional roles of disability support care. Gone are the days of experts’ telling individuals what is best for them and expecting unquestioned compliance. Instead, the relationship has evolved into one where the individual is considered an equal partner alongside their support provider in decision making, planning, goal setting and monitoring of their care.
Person centred care does just this by encouraging the active collaboration and shared decision making between the individual, their family, and their service provider to design and manage a customised, comprehensive care plan.
Everyone wants to remain independent for as long as possible. Person centred care encourages independence in the individual by empowering them to have greater control over their life. This increased autonomy results in the individual being able to perform more tasks with less dependence on their disability support provider. Not only is this beneficial on a personal level for the individual, but it also encourages them to take a greater part in decision making. By raising their engagement, support providers can reach better, more suitable decisions relating to their care.
HOW TO ACHIEVE PERSON CENTRED CARE
Lifeplan strives to achieve person centred care through the following:
- Taking a holistic approach to assessing their needs and providing care
- Including families and friends in the decision-making process
- Ensuring that our services are easily accessible and flexible
- Looking at their whole experience of care to promote coordination and continuity
- Making sure that the physical, cultural and psychosocial environment of our services follows the person centred care ethos
- Ensuring that all staff are supportive, well trained in communication and striving to put people at the centre of their care
- Focusing on strengths, goals and working within a positive framework
- Supporting values, rights, beliefs and positive relationships across all stakeholders
- Encouraging choice wherever relevant to the person and within an environment of respect for others
The movement towards a person centred approach in the disability support sector demonstrates how fully involving an individual at all stages of their plan will lead to more efficacious and satisfying outcomes.
By adopting a person centred approach, our methods become safer, of higher quality, and more effective. It also satisfies an ethical imperative – involving those in the planning and governance of their care is just simply the right thing to do. Contact us today to start your Lifeplan care plan.