Minnesota is moving toward person-centered practices in all areas of service delivery. As a state, Minnesota strives to make sure everyone who receives long-term services and supports and mental health services can live, learn, work and enjoy life in the most integrated setting. The goal is for people to lead lives that are meaningful to them. To do this, we must have a person-centered support system that helps people:
- Build or maintain relationships with their families and friends
- Live as independently as possible
- Engage in productive activities, such as employment
- Participate in community life.
Our support system must reflect that we understand, respect and honor the things each person thinks are important.
Person-centered practices are essential to this effort. Person-centered practices are flexible and adaptable. They encourage informed choice and creativity. We use person-centered practices because they increase people's quality of life.
Our transition to this person-centered approach reflects one of DHS’ core values: We focus on people, not programs. However, the person-centered approach is not unique to Minnesota. It is a practice that is emerging across a wide variety of fields that work with different people in different settings. Many state and federal policies now mandate person-centered delivery of long-term services and supports.