The resources linked below are presented with a brief summary, an indication of the content areas and links to access the source documents. Inclusion of the resource on this page does not imply a specific endorsement of any one approach to ensure that supports and services are person-centered.

This resource page will be regularly updated. To suggest additional documents, please email

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Education and Awareness

Education and Awareness

Technical Assistance

Technical Assistance & Training

Policy and Research

Policy & Research

Quality & Service Delivery

Quality & Service Delivery

Direct Support Professionals: Promising Recruitment and Retention Strategies

Valerie J. Bradley

This issue paper explores some strategies that providers can employ to increase recruitment and retention of Direct Support Professionals.

Measuring Up: How Do We Know That We Are Making Progress towards a System that Puts the Person at the Center?

Alixe Bonardi and Mary Lou Bourne

This presentation provides an overview of why measuring person-centered practices (PCP) is important, different perspectives on how to measure PCP, a framework for multiple measures of PCP and measures of PCP for quality improvement.

9 Pillars of a Person-Centered System

Michael Smull

Michael Smull, partner at Support Development Associates and NCAPPS faculty member, describes nine components that work in concert to make up a person-centered human services system. This is the first in a series of short pieces authored by Michael Smull on person-centered systems change.

In the second part of a series of blogs on what is required to have a person-centered system, Michael Smull looks at an underlying requirement for change: pressure.

Health Care Person-Centered Profile

Identity Mark

NCAPPS subject matter experts have created a tool – the Health Care Person-Centered Profile – to communicate a person’s wants and needs if they are hospitalized without the direct support of their caregivers, family, neighbors, or friends.

The tool has two pages. The first page can be used to capture brief and vital information about the person’s health status. The second page contains the Person-Centered Profile, a one-page brief description of the things that can assist medical staff in providing more tailored and person-centered care. You can use the accompanying instructions to fill out the template for yourself, someone you love, or someone you’re caring for. We have also created examples that show how the tool can be used by people with a range of different backgrounds and concerns.

Person-Centered Practice as Anchor and Beacon: Pandemic Wisdom from the NCAPPS Community

Connor Bailey, Martha Barbone, Lydia X. Z. Brown, Alixe Bonardi, Bevin Croft, Marian Frattarola-Saulino, Karyn Harvey, Miso Kwak, Kelly Lang, Nicole LeBlanc, Michelle C. Reynolds, Carole Starr

This paper explores themes from a series of short videos created by members of the NCAPPS community in the early days of the pandemic. The themes are organized in four levels:

  1. individual disabled people and their/our spouses, family, and friends
  2. person-centered strategies
  3. system, services, and providers
  4. society

The paper discusses both specific factors within each of the levels and the complex interplay between each of the factors at four levels.

Race Equity and Brain Injury

Monica Lichi, Eric Washington, and Connor Bailey

This presentation and accompanying brief provide an overview of racial disparities in access to health care broadly, and recognition and treatment of brain injury more specifically. NCAPPS Brain Injury Learning Collaborative faculty Monica Lichi and Eric Washington discuss the importance of understanding implicit biases, and engaging in self-advocacy and collaboration.

Technical assistance needs for realizing person-centered thinking, planning and practices in United States human service systems

Bevin Croft, Jami Petner-Arrey, and Dorothy Hiersteiner

This paper summarizes and analyzes seven common themes that emerged from the technical assistance applications at the inception of the National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS), providing a unique window into human service system administrators' priorities for achieving more person-centered human service systems and the conditions that may promote or hinder systems change.

Applying Peer Support to the Top 10 Concerns About Person-Centered Planning in Mental Health Systems

Martha Barbone

In 2012, Janis Tondora and colleagues authored an article outlining the Top Ten Concerns about Person-Centered Care Planning in Mental Health Systems. In this brief, Martha Barbone, a member of the NCAPPS Person-Centered Advisory and Leadership Group, describes the role peer support can play in addressing each concern.

Community Living in the Era of COVID-19: Moving Toward a More Flexible, Accessible Future

Nicole LeBlanc; with editorial support from Alixe Bonardi and Connor Bailey

NCAPPS Person-Centered Advisory (PAL) group coordinator, Nicole LeBlanc, shares her reflections on how the COVID-19 pandemic has been impacting the disability community, and prompts us to take this crisis as an opportunity for improvement and innovation.

Key Elements to Ensure the DSP Workforce Has the Competency to Protect Health and Welfare in the Context of a Person-Centered Approach

Valerie Bradley

Training competent direct support professionals (DSPs) and maintaining the DSP workforce can greatly influence quality of life for people with disabilities who receive long-term services and supports. This issue brief prepared by Valerie Bradley discusses considerations for ensuring a training regimen will increase direct support staff expertise and improve the quality of services and supports.

Long-Term Services and Supports Rebalancing Toolkit

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

This resource from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is intended for the state Medicaid agency staff to provide background information, resources, and promising practices that support state efforts to rebalance Medicaid long-term services and supports (LTSS) in favor of home and community-based services (HCBS).

Five Competency Domains for Staff Who Facilitate Person-Centered Planning

Janis Tondora, Bevin Croft, Yoshi Kardell, Teresita Camacho-Gonsalves, and Miso Kwak

This resource, which builds from foundational approaches to person-centered planning and the 2020 National Quality Forum Person-Centered Planning and Practice Final Report, describes five skill areas, or domains, that facilitators should possess to support a fully person-centered planning process: A. Strengths-Based, Culturally Informed, Whole Person-Focused; B. Cultivating Connections Inside the System and Out; C. Rights, Choice, and Control; D. Partnership, Teamwork, Communication, and Facilitation; and E. Documentation, Implementation, and Monitoring.

Plain language version

Person-Centered Practices Self-Assessment

Mary Lou Bourne for NCAPPS

Developed as part of NCAPPS technical assistance, this Self-Assessment is designed to help leadership at human service agencies in States, Tribes, and Territories to measure their progress in developing a more person-centered system. It contains questions about observable practices across eight system domains: Leadership; Person-Centered Culture; Eligibility & Service Access; Person-Centered Service Planning & Monitoring; Finance; Workforce Capacity & Capabilities; Collaboration & Partnership; and Quality & Innovation.

Plain language version

Dignity of Risk and Person-Centered Planning During COVID-19

Nicole LeBlanc; with editorial support from Alixe Bonardi and Miso Kwak

NCAPPS PAL Group Coordinator, Nicole Leblanc, has a new publication which we are releasing on the NCAPPS website: “Dignity of Risk and Person-Centered Planning During COVID-19: Balancing Risk and Embracing Opportunity in the Face of Grave Challenges”. Check it out for a thoughtful discussion of her experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic and how this relates to risk and living a life that includes dignity of risk. “It might take some creativity, but I think people can still be doing things that allow them to take chances and grow. This is a good time to explore interests and try learning new skills.”

Person-Centered Thinking, Planning, and Practice: Representative Examples of State Definitions

Jane Lawrence

Although there are now a range of strong national definitions of person-centered thinking, planning, and practice, many state human service agencies find it important to develop their own local definitions for use in policy statements and implementation protocols. This environmental scan serves as a starting point for state, tribal, and territory human service agencies as they operationalize person-centered approaches in their local contexts.

NQF: Person Centered Planning and Practice Final Report

National Quality Forum

Description: In July 2020, the National Quality Forum completed a report that drew upon multi-stakeholder expertise to refine the definition of Person Centered Planning, establish a list of core competencies for person-centered-planning facilitation, and help establish a framework for measuring quality in person centered planning.

Engaging People Who Receive Services: A Best Practice Guide

Mark Friedman and Ruthie-Marie Beckwith for NCAPPS

This best practice guide is designed to assist human service systems to fully and effectively include people who receive services in system planning and improvement efforts. It is relevant for all systems that support older adults and people with disabilities and was created as part of NCAPPS technical assistance activities.

Asset Mapping:

Collective Insight for NCAPPS

Asset Mapping is process of mapping out (e.g., with visuals or lists) stakeholders and how they are already engaged by an agency and/or its allies. Developing an Asset Map provides the opportunity to identify existing groups, communication practices, trusted relationships, and products to springboard from as opposed to starting the engagement process from scratch. This toolkit contains a variety of resources – frequently asked questions, a glossary of terms, step-by-step instructions, facilitator tools, and example Asset Maps and Engagement Plans – to support human service agencies in their stakeholder engagement efforts.

Survivor Engagement: Lessons from The TAL-Group’s Advocacy Journeys

The Traumatic Brain Injury Advisory and Leadership Group

This resource shares the lessons from the journeys of members of the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Advisory and Leadership Group (TAL-Group) as brain injury survivor who are active in advocacy work. The TAL-Group guides the priorities and assists with the activities of the TBI Technical Assistance and Resource Center (TBI-TARC).

Person-Centered Planning Facilitation: Summary of Research and Findings

NCAPPS - Yoshi Kardell, Valerie Bradley, Alixe Bonardi, and Jane Lawrence

This overview of person-centered plan facilitation services explores the experience of states that have specifically included plan facilitators in their HCBS waivers, the circumstance under which the states deploy plan facilitators, the rates paid, and training requirements.

Achieving Person-Centered Care: The Five Pillars of System Transformation

SCAN Foundation

The SCAN Foundation's policy brief on system change towards a person-centered system for older adults and people with disabilities includes guidance for administrators and others.

Principles for Person-directed Services and Supports during Serious Illness


ACL, with substantial stakeholder input, developed these principles for supporting older adults and people with disabilities during serious illness.

Becoming a Person Centered System — A Brief Overview

Michael W. Smull, Mary Lou Bourne, and Helen Sanderson

This report briefly describes methods and efforts states and agencies can use to become more person-centered.

The Fundamentals of Person-Centered Care for Individuals with Dementia

Fazio, S., Pace, D., Flinner, J., & Kallmyer, B.

This article in The Gerontologist examines the history, components, and impact of person-centered care practices specifically among people with dementia.

SAMHSA's Working Definition and Principles of Recovery


This website connects the reader to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration working definition of recovery and principles of recovery.

Person-Centered Care: A Definition and Essential Elements

The American Geriatrics Society Expert Panel on Person-Centered Care

A team of experts developed this article that provides the evidence base to support a definition of person-centered care and its essential elements.

Person-Centered Thinking, Planning, and Practice: A National Environmental Scan of Definitions and Principles

Human Services Research Institute

To guide the technical assistance provided as part of the National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS), the Human Services Research Institute prepared a national overview of person-centered principles across aging and disability systems, including mental health systems.

Person-Centered Thinking, Planning, and Practice: A National Environmental Scan of Indicators

Human Services Research Institute

To guide the technical assistance provided as part of the National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS), the Human Services Research Institute conducted a national review of indicators that may be used to assess person-centered principles in aging and disability systems, including mental health systems.

Person-Centered Thinking, Planning, and Practice: A National Environmental Scan of Foundational Resources and Approaches

Suzanne Crisp and Jane Lawrence

This resource, created as part of NCAPPS technical assistance, provides an annotated summary description of foundational resources and approaches for person-centered thinking, planning, and practice.

Making the Most of Lived Experience

Carole Starr, Kelly Lang, and Eric Washington

This resource provides tips on making the most of lived experience when people with brain injury and professionals are working together on a team.

Supporting Virtual Meeting Accessibility

Nicole LeBlanc

Nicole LeBlanc, coordinator of the Person-Centered Advisory and Leadership Group for NCAPPS worked with the NCAPPS team to develop a lessons-learned guide to help make virtual meetings more accessible for all.