Well-Formed Outcomes in Health and Social Care

Topics: Need, Want, Outcome Pages: 12 (3285 words) Published: May 6, 2013
Well-Formed Outcomes in Thurrock Health and Social Care


As part of the move to Person Centred Planning and Person Centred Care Delivery the “People in Control Roadmap” was developed. The roadmap was designed to bring about major changes in the experiences of care for users. The vision for these changes has been set out in the white paper – Our Health, Our Care, Our Say. The purpose is to ensure that the service users are in control of their care and support in all cases. The roadmap set out a range of interlinked actions required to bring about the scale of change if this simple-sounding-vision it to be realised. There were three main streams of work: - • Empowering clients.

• Changing and developing people.
• Working methods based on outcomes.

This last work stream talks to the commissioning and providing services and is key to putting people in control. It provides flexibility that providers and people who use services need, to respond to changing needs and wishes. There were a range of technical and process issues that had to be tackled to support this way of working in contrast to the usual focus on tasks.

One step was defining a new Commissioning Plan to be used as a tool to express the person-who-uses-services needs and wishes in terms of outcomes. This document would then form the basis, along with a Risk Management Plan, for the provider to develop individual support plans.

The key to the successful development of all these plans is the involvement and agreement of the person who is using the service.


“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to”, said the cat.

“I don’t much care where…..” , said Alice.

“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go”, said the cat.

Lewis Carol “Alice in Wonderland”.

The fact is that if you don’t choose a direction in life or where you want your life to go, there are plenty of other people and circumstances that will choose it for you.

We are familiar with the need to set goals in our lives but are they effective or, like so many new-year resolutions, well-intentioned vague ideas and desires? Often we fall at the first hurdle, give up when unforeseen circumstances arise, or get frustrated that other people don’t want to go along with our plans.

The answer to the question “are objectives just vague ideas” is probably yes. A model exists within Neuro-Linguistic Programming that provides a framework in which to set definable and achievable goals. It is based on the original ideas of well-formed outcomes from the field of NLP.

This document sets out to explore what constitutes a well-defined or well-formed outcome in terms of its written structure and attempts to relate that to outcomes created within Health and Social Care in terms in order to develop a model for use in that field.

What is a Outcome?

In everyday speech, an outcome is a consequence arising from an action, or alternatively a goal, one wishes (or hopes) to achieve.

A well-formed outcome is a term for an outcome one wishes to achieve, that meets certain conditions designed to avoid: -

1. Unintended costs or consequences
2. Resistance to achieving the goal resulting from internal conflicting feelings or thoughts about the outcome.

So, a high quality outcome is more that just a vague wish or goal. It is an objective or goal, which is integrated with all aspects on one’s life (morals, ethics, relationships, finances, health, body, etc.) and has a process of accomplishment that respects and supports current desirable circumstances in one’s life.

It is consistent with forward-thinking action and has been clearly and well enough defined to be free of common “muddy thinking”.

In NLP a distinction is made between goals and outcomes. A goal is a lay-term, it can be lacking in the precision and cognitive clarity needed to...
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