Supported self-care depends upon establishing strong person-centred partnerships between individuals who need support and the professionals involved in their care. To be effective, these partnerships rely upon empowerment, positive attitudes and behaviours, and treating people with dignity and respect:

  • Empowerment means making sure that people can make informed personal choices. This can be done by focusing upon individual strengths and achievements, promoting individual involvement and giving individuals control;
  • The positive attitudes and behaviours required from professionals in order to create successful partnerships include being confident, enthusiastic, encouraging, optimistic and showing patience;
  • Valuing the individual and treating them with dignity and respect requires professionals to take into account the opinions and expectations of the individual, and to uphold their choices. This includes acknowledging and appreciating cultural and social diversity and promoting equality.

Addressing Challenges

There may be challenges for both individuals and professionals in the creation of successful person-centred partnerships. Professionals may have a tendency to make assumptions rather than to find out how a person truly feels, and negative attitudes and behaviours may exist on both sides. For example, an individual might lack the insight or motivation to embark upon a programme of self-care, whilst professionals might perceive it as a time consuming approach that offers little advantage compared to their usual professional practice. However, with honesty, commitment and enthusiasm these challenges can be overcome, and the resulting partnerships can be rewarding and positive for all concerned.

Further information
Care Certificate Standard 5: Work in a Person Centred Way
Care Certificate Standard 4: Equality and Diversity