Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

In mental health, a treatment plan refers to a written document that outlines the progression of therapy. It will be used by you and your therapist to direct the steps to take in treating whatever you’re working on. Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

Factors Influencing a Treatment Plan

A treatment plan may be highly formalized or it may consist of loosely handwritten notes. Which form it takes is dependent on a number of factors.

For instance, your insurance company may require documentation of your diagnosis and treatment in order to cover the costs. Likewise, the facility where you get treatment may have its own standards for a formal plan.

Many therapists also have their own preferences. Some may have found that informal treatment plans are more effective while others prefer to work with patients in a more orderly fashion. Quite often, they will also take into account the severity of the presenting problem for each individual.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study Someone dealing with minor depression may have a looser treatment plan than a person who has struggled with it for years with little or no progress.

No matter how formalized, however, the treatment plan is always subject to change as therapy progresses. Quite often therapy is a series of baby steps, taking on one thing at a time to work out the concerns of the bigger picture. It’s only natural that as you progress, so will your treatment and if something isn’t working, a different approach may be required.

 

Parts of a Treatment Plan

In general, a treatment plan consists of four parts. These guide both you and your therapist along the path to discovering what is causing your concerns, your goals for therapy, as well as the techniques you’re going to try.

 

A therapist with long dark hair writes a treatment plan with the person in treatment, an adult male of colorTreatment plans are documentation tools that are considered essential to the implementation of well-rounded health care. Most providers, especially those in the mental health field, use treatment plans as blueprints to guide services provided. Mental health treatment plans typically highlight important assessment information, define areas of concern, and establish concrete goals for treatment.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

Mental Health Care Treatment Plans

Mental health treatment plans are versatile, multi-faceted documents that allow mental health care practitioners and those they are treating to design and monitor therapeutic treatment. These plans are typically used by psychiatrists, psychologists, professional counselors, therapists, and social workers, in most levels of care.

Treatment plans are strength-based and collaborative, and they aim to reflect the best interests of the person in therapy. Concrete representations of the therapeutic alliance between mental health professionals and those they treat (and sometimes the families of those in treatment), treatment plans are agreements that outline a team approach toward problem-solving and empowerment.

Effective mental health treatment plans are often comprised of the following components:

  • History, Assessment, and Demographics: This section can include basic demographic information, psycho social history, onset of symptoms, diagnoses (past and present), treatment history, and any other assessment information pertinent to well-being.
  • Presenting Concerns: This section details the current concerns and mental health issues that led the individual to seek treatment.
  • Treatment Contract: The treatment contract summarizes the goals for change, often a mutually agreed-upon plan for what will be worked on. It usually details who is responsible for what, as well as what treatment modality will be used.
  • Strengths: Throughout the plan, practitioners often include information about the perceived strengths of the person in treatment.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study This can empower individuals to tap into their areas of strength to achieve their goals.
  • Modality, Frequency, and Targets: Throughout the plan, each goal typically includes the type of treatment modality that will be used to achieve it. The frequency of sessions and target dates for completion are also often included.
  • Treatment Goals: Goals are the building blocks of the treatment plan. They are designed to be specific, realistic, and tailored to the needs of the person in therapy. The language should also meet the person on their level. Goals are usually measurable—rating scales, target percentages, and behavioral tracking can be incorporated into the goal language to ensure that it is measurable.
  • Objectives: Goals are often broken down into objectives in order to support the person in therapy through the process of taking small, achievable steps toward the completion of the larger goal.
  • Interventions: Goals usually also include the various techniques and interventions the mental health professional will implement in order to support achievement of the larger goal.
  • Progress/Outcomes: Documenting progress toward goals is considered to be one of the most important aspects of mental health treatment plans. Progress and outcomes of the work are typically documented under each goal. When the treatment plan is reviewed, the progress sections summarize how things are going in and out of sessions. This portion of the treatment plan will often intersect with clinical progress notes.

A sample goal, complete with objectives, interventions, and progress:

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GOAL 1:

Chris will implement a parenting plan that promotes improved behavior in his son, as rated at least a 6 out of 10, where 10 is excellent.

OBJECTIVES:

  1. Chris will make a list of the household rules.
  2. Chris will make a list of rewards and consequences and will define how to enforce them.
  3. Chris will present his new parenting plan to his son during a family meeting.
  4. Chris will enforce rewards and consequences consistently and will monitor his progress in and out of session.

INTERVENTIONS:

  1. Therapist will provide psycho education on positive parenting and will support Chris in developing a concrete parenting plan.
  2. Therapist will provide materials for Chris to document the new house rules, rewards, and consequences system.
  3. Therapist will monitor progress and check in with Chris weekly to ensure that Chris is implementing his plan consistently.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

PROGRESS:Over the past 30 days, Chris was able to achieve objectives 1, 2, and 3. He reported that his son accepted the new system and even seemed excited. Therapist provided Chris with the book Positive Parenting and assigned various readings for homework, which Chris completed consistently. Therapist and Chris created a poster board that detailed the rules, consequences, and rewards system Chris designed for his son. Chris reported that he is ready to begin enforcing his new parenting system. Chris and therapist rated the progress on this goal at a 5, as Chris is already seeing improvement in his ability to parent and in his son’s behavior.

How are Mental Health Care Treatment Plans Used?

Mental health care professionals utilize treatment plans in many ways. Depending on the type of service, there may be specific regulations or best-practice standards that guide the formation of the treatment plan.

Treatment plans are important for mental health care for a number of reasons:

  • Treatment plans can provide a guide to how services may best be delivered.
  • Professionals who do not rely on treatment plans may be at risk for fraud, waste, and abuse, and they could potentially cause harm to people in therapy. Implementing a plan for treatment can protect both the provider and the person being treated, as it ensures that all parties involved have a clear understanding of the progress being made and long-term goals.
  • Treatment plans provide a summary of services rendered, so professionals may use treatment plans as supportive documentation for billing, if necessary.
  • When a person enters the mental health system, they may engage in several types of services throughout the process of treatment. Treatment plans allow for continuous care that takes into consideration a person’s past concerns and treatment as well as current needs.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study Treatment plans can thus help prevent duplication of service and reduce the likelihood that a person will be offered a treatment that did not work in the past.

Some commercial insurances and most managed care organizations (MCOs) require that treatment plans be completed for every person in treatment. MCOs offer specific guidelines regarding what should go into a treatment plan and how frequently plans should be updated and reviewed. Different types of services are regulated differently; therefore, the expectations for treatment plans can vary. Some service regulations require treatment plans be reviewed every 30 days, while others, like mental health outpatient care, may only require updates every 100 days or so.

Treatment Plans and HIPAA

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule grants consumers and people in treatment various privacy rights as they relate to consumer health information, including mental health information. Most documentation and information created or discussed during mental health treatment is kept confidential. More often than not, this information cannot be shared with other providers or family members without a form authorizing the release of information, signed by the person in treatment or their parent (in the case of a minor child).

There are few caveats, however, when it comes to protected mental health information:

  • When children participate in therapy, parents are generally allowed to receive a copy of their minor child’s treatment plan. This may vary in certain states depending on the age of consent.
  • In family therapy, when there is an identified individual through whom services are billed, often the treatment plan focuses primarily on that person’s mental health needs. However, if over the course of treatment it becomes clinically necessary to include family therapy sessions, information pertaining to other family members may be documented in the treatment plan. By law, each family member must provide consent, not just the identified individual, before that treatment plan is shared with other providers.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

It is considered best practice for mental health practitioners to be as overt and strength-based as possible when it comes to treatment plan documentation as family members and other providers may see the plan—provided the person in therapy grants the treatment provider the permission to release information.

References:

  1. Children’s mental health Individual treatment plans. (2016, February 5). Retrieved from http://www.dhs.state.mn.us/main/idcplg?IdcService=GET_DYNAMIC_CONVERSION&RevisionSelectionMethod=LatestReleased&dDocName=dhs16_168991
  2. Hansen, M. (1996). Writing effective treatment plans: The Pennsylvania CASSP model. Retrieved from http://www.ccbh.com/pdfs/Providers/healthchoices/articles/TreatmentPlans.pdf
  3. HIPAA privacy rule and sharing information related to mental health. (2014, February 20). Retrieved from http://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/special-topics/mental-health
  4. Hutchison, M., Casper, P., Harris, J., Orcutt, J., & Trejo, M. (2008, July 31). The clinician’s guide to writing treatment plans and progress notes. Retrieved from https://www.sccgov.org/sites/dads/Adult%20System%20of%20Care%20Policy%20-%20Procedure/Documents/Clinician_Gde_toolkit.pdf

 

 

1. Goals (or objectives)

Every good treatment plan starts with a clear goal (or set of goals). Identify what your client would like to work on and write it down. Don’t be scared of limiting your work, you can always adjust these as time goes on. However, it’s helpful to write down and discuss what your client’s purpose is for starting therapy. How will they know they are on the right path? What will you both use to determine when the client is ready to terminate?

Having a clear goal makes sure everyone is on the same page and keeps you both accountable to focusing on what is necessary.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study It also helps your client to feel like therapy is something that is more than esoteric, something they could describe to a spouse or family member, if desired.

2. Active participation

A treatment plan then follows up with how each party will work to achieve the goal(s). This is really important and often missed. Talk with your client about your role as a counselor and how you plan to help them achieve their desired outcome. This opens up a great discussion about the role of a counselor and how therapy looks with you, specifically, as compared with others.

The other key piece here is how the client will participate. This is where you have the opportunity to explain what is expected of them and that you’re not there to simply “fix” anyone. Therapy is often hard work but can have amazing results. However, success is 100% dependent on the client’s motivation and willingness to engage in the process.

3. Support

Another aspect of treatment planning that is so often forgotten in private practice settings is the client’s support system. It’s not just you and the client against the world. They’ll need other supports in place to be successful throughout life. Identify any support as part of your treatment plan and you have already shown your client some of the tools in their toolbox.

Get creative here. Perhaps the client’s support is a family member or friend but it could also be a pet or a support group. Maybe it’s a hobby or spiritual practice that helps keep them grounded. Perhaps some character traits like being fiscally responsible, planning ahead or being very outgoing or creative. These are all supportive things that help the client reach their goals.

4. Outcomes

The last important aspect of the written plan is the outcomes, or success. Make sure to write these down at various intervals. Maybe you visit the outcomes so far once a month, maybe every three months, etc. Choose what interval works best for your client and your style and make sure to plan to talk with them about it.

Is this still the primary goal or do we need to adjust something? Are we staying on track with these? If not, is time to redirect or do we need to revisit some things?Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study What success have we made and what contributed to that? What will we continue to do in order to reach that goal?

And once you do clearly reach that goal, have we discovered other things through the process that we need to prioritize? Is it time to talk about termination and what will that look like? I could go on and on. The clinical material is just waiting to be discussed!

5. Client involvement

I’ve save the most important step to effective treatment planning for last. Involving your clients is crucial. Without their feedback, your treatment plan is no more meaningful than a term paper with a bunch of words on it. Remember, your documentation serves you and the client, not the other way around!

This is an ongoing conversation to have throughout treatment. Treatment planning isn’t something you do at the first or second session and then forget about. It’s an integral part of the counseling process. It’s a clinical discussion that’s simply put on paper to provide a clear outline and clearer understanding of the direction in which you plan to go. 

I’ve created a template using these five steps as the foundation. You are welcome to download the template and use in your own practice, or modify it to better suit your style and client population. I love seeing how people adjust my templates and personalize them so if you do make changes, share them by emailing me or leave a comment below.

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To access the template, simply sign up for my free Private Practice Paperwork Crash Course. I’ve got lots of goodies in there, along with some more direction for you on treatment planning. I wish you all the best using it with your clients!

Mental Health Treatment Plan

 

A mental health treatment plan is a tool used by doctors, counselors/therapists, and clients to shape the focus of mental health therapy. A mental health care plan helps therapists and clients make positive change happen through purpose, focus, and direction.

At a basic level, mental health treatment plans help people manage mental health problems and develop opportunities for change and growth. Simultaneously, they help ensure safety through proper care and treatment; indeed, all aspects of a treatment plan must be sound and part of a mental health counselor’s high quality, effective practice. And if you are engaging in mental health counseling as a patient, you should have one in place.

The beauty of a mental health treatment plan is that it helps people separate who they are from the problems they’re experiencing and become unstuck, able to move forward positively. A mental health therapist is like a tour guide, the client is the adventurer, and the treatment plan is a colorful map to the client’s happy and healthy place.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

Who Needs A Mental Health Treatment Plan?

Mental health treatment plans are for everyone experiencing mental health challenges and difficulties with life as well as for people who have been diagnosed with mental illness.

Treatment plans are for anyone and any issue. A partial list of who and what treatment plans are for includes:

  • people living with a serious mental illness
  • people experience distress in one or more areas of life (work, school, relationships, etc.)
  • children
  • adults
  • elderly
  • individuals
  • couples
  • families
  • people with developmental disabilities
  • people experiencing sexual or gender identity issues
  • people being bullied and/or abused
  • bullies and/or abusers
  • parents
  • people in the criminal justice system
  • employers
  • employees

and more.

Both therapy and accompanying mental health care plans are truly for everyone and every difficulty. With such a wide range of people and challenges, treatment plans can’t be one-size-fits all approaches to healing and wellness.

While mental health treatment plan templates exist to help in the creation of a plan, these ideally are mere guidelines. Mental health treatment plans help doctors and counselors consider the nature of the problem or disorder to this individual client and to consider this client’s individual situation, characteristics, and goals.

Because mental health issues are personal (what bipolar disorder is specifically like for one person will look slightly different in another), and because each person is unique, a one-off in the world, so too must be mental health treatment plans. A particular treatment, such as specific mental health medication or a particular therapeutic approach, can work well with one person but not at all with the next.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study Therefore, treatment plans are individualized approaches to therapy.

Creating a Mental Health Treatment Plan

After initial assessment is complete and a diagnosis made, mental health doctors, therapists, and clients collaborate to develop a treatment plan. When doing so, important factors are considered:

  • the nature of the disorder
  • client characteristics, including his or her strengths
  • the specific treatment approach to be used

The emphasis in creating a treatment plan is on how things will be different at the end of treatment and how clients will remain healthy. Treatment planning is a process that involves multiple steps:

  • identification of the problem and the most important issues
  • specific definition of the issues
  • development of measure able short- and long-term goals
  • creation of the interventions that will help reach the goals

Important guiding concepts in a treatment plan involve:

  • a picture of what’s going on for the client right now
  • a vision of what the client wants and possibilities for the future
  • the creation of a forward path to help clients achieve what they need and want

Mental health treatment plans are comprehensive and incorporate all facets of a client and his or her treatment. Plans for success address thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. They incorporate specific strategies and types of therapy, including mental health medications. Mental health difficulties are all-encompassing, impacting someone’s internal and external worlds; so, too, must a treatment plan.

Mental Health Treatment Plans are Positive

Effective mental health treatment plans, those colorful maps, do what the person wants and needs them to do. Treatment plans empower him or her to take charge of his or her own life, address mental health distress, and move forward toward that happy and healthy place with strong mental health, emotional health, and well-being.Treatment Plan Assignment Case Study

 

 

 

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