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Moving Toward Person- and Family-Centered Care


Person- and family-centered care (PFCC) recognizes that each person and family is unique, and therefore delivering healthcare and supportive services should address an individual’s needs, goals, preferences, cultural traditions, family situation, and values. PFCC includes the person and the family at the center of the care team, along with health and social service workers, and direct care professionals. AARP created this document on PFCC to provide insight on this topic, including the importance of family to PFCC, and to discuss key elements of PFCC in practice.

Key Points

Serious illness and chronic disability affects both the older adult who needs care and the family. This  is why PFCC focuses on improving the care experiences for all parties involved by supporting choice and well-being for individuals and their families. Key elements of PFCC include respect and dignity for the older person and family, recognition of the whole person, assessing and addressing the needs, promoting communication and shared decision making, and emphasizing coordination and collaboration across care settings.

Other report highlights include:

  1. In 2008, family caregivers provided over 40 billion hours of unpaid work, making it clear that without these caregivers the health care and long-term care systems would not likely be able to meet the needs of the growing population of older adults in America.
  2. It is estimated that 66 percent of people with disabilities who receive home care get all of their care from family members.

How to Use

Local officials can use this information to help disseminate information about PFCC. Additionally, family caregivers typically need information and support to function as effectively as possible in their caregiving role, including education, training, and access to support services. It is the role of local officials to recognize family caregivers and help to provide this necessary support to them.

View full report: Moving Toward Person- and Family-Centered Care (PDF – 257 KB)

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