According to the International Academy of Life Care Planners, a life care plan is a "dynamic document based upon published standards of practice, comprehensive assessment, data analysis and research. It provides an organized, concise plan for current and future needs with associated costs for individuals who have experienced catastrophic injury or have chronic health care needs. When applicable, the life care plan incorporates opinions arrived at collaboratively alongside various health care professionals and is considered a flexible document, evaluated, and updated as needed." (International Conference on Life Care Planning and the International Academy of Life Care Planners. Adopted April, 1998)
A life care plan is utilized to document the future care needs and associated costs for a variety of injuries, including but not limited to brain injury, spinal cord injury, birth injury, orthopedic injury, chronic pain, and vaccine injury.
Cases most likely to benefit from a life care plan are those requiring multiple physicians and/or rehabilitation services, medications, procedures, surgeries, as well as those in which home adaptations and/or assistance by a nurse, care attendant or home maintenance personnel are needed on an ongoing or recurring basis. Each plan is tailored to the specific needs of that individual.
As care managers, we have decades of expertise and knowledge of medical treatments, care options, expected outcomes and complications, as well as community resources. Our team consists of multiple certified care managers, certified life care planners and a certified nurse life care planner. Our life care planning professionals have been accepted as experts in multiple jurisdictions and routinely collaborate with various interdisciplinary medical professionals to create a life plan that addresses the following:
- Safety in the home and community
- Function in day-to-day activities
- Supportive services needed to promote best function in the home and community
- Adaptive aids and specialty equipment to promote best function
- Home and environmental obstacles to be addressed for optimal emotional, spiritual, social roles and function
- Community access and involvement
A referral for life care planning services is best initiated by contacting our office with a discussion of the needs of your client, the time in which the plan will be needed and the appropriateness of the referral. Case initiation begins with….
- Signed retainer agreement with retainer check
- Copies of depositions and responses to interrogatories, when available
- Contact information for your client’s current providers and physician experts
- Copies of the medical, educational, rehabilitation and billing records
The average life care plan takes about 40 hours, although these hours may be expended over several months. This includes time to review medical records, an interview with your client, when appropriate, collaboration with experts and or treaters, service and cost research, and report preparation. This estimate does not include testimony or trial preparation.
The injured individual's diagnoses, the number of providers and their response time to inquiries, the volume of materials for review, and case load all impact the amount of time it takes to complete a plan.