(Re)Defining Person-Centered Planning

Bevin Croft, Ebony Flint and Sera Davidow

The National Center for Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS) defines person-centered planning as a process, directed by the person with helpers they choose, to learn about the choices and interests that make up a good life and identify the supports (paid and unpaid) needed to achieve it. “Person-centered” is a buzzword in mental health service systems, and it’s common for service plans to be called “person-centered.” However, it’s unclear whether people are truly directing their planning process and choosing supports that really matter to them. While person-centered planning is intended to support people to live self-determined lives, it can also be used inappropriately to compel and coerce people into services they don’t want. When done well, person-centered planning has the potential to advance equity by opening up multiple pathways to wellbeing. And poorly implemented person-centered planning can deepen existing inequities.

Through presentations and storytelling, presenters from the National Center for Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS) and the Council Against Institutional and Psychiatric Abuse (CAIPA) will explore what person-centered planning should – and shouldn’t – look like.

Attendees will:

  • Engage with the presenters and one another to identify service experiences that are and are not person-centered
  • Explore how person-centered planning as it is typically implemented serves to sustain or increase existing racial and cultural divides and inequities
  • Review best practice and requirements for person-centered planning in home and community-based services and Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics
  • Learn about resources and tools to promote truly person-centered planning and practice