What is a Life Care Plan?
The American Amputee Foundation, Inc. began offering
Life Care Planning Services in 1978. As a nonprofit
organization which provides services primarily for
amputees and their families and, secondarily, those with
spinal cord injury, we have limited our life care planning
services to those clients. It is our opinion that no one
individual can be an expert in all disabilities, with
exception of some highly trained and specialized
physicians. Furthermore, because of the amount of
research material of which we must stay abreast, we
feel that by focusing on amputation and spinal injury
we can better serve our clients.
- A life care plan is a comprehensive and organized
approach of gathering and presenting long term cost of
care information for someone who has a serious long term disability. Life Care Plans are designed to provide the individual with a disability with the goods and services they need to insure good health, safety, and restore the person’s previous life activities to the extent possible. They are not meant to be a crystal ball, but as a guide based on what is usual, customary, reasonable and necessary to a reasonable degree of medical, rehabilitation, and Life Care Planning certainty.
About Life Care Planning Services
•Projected Evaluations: physical and/or occupational therapy evaluations; driver’s evaluations; psychological evaluations; vocational evaluations; recreational evaluations •Wheelchair/Mobility Equipment and Maintenance Needs •Projected Therapies: physical and/or occupational therapy; mental health/vocational counseling
•Orthotics and/or Prosthetics: purchase, repair, maintenance, and supplies •Home Maintenance / Care: home health care needs, housekeeping, and yard care •Projected Routine Future Medical Care: physiatrist, orthopedics, plastic surgeon, urologist, pain specialist •Diagnostic Testing/Educational Assessment: annual blood work/educational testing •Home Modification: bathroom modifications, entry/egress accessibility, kitchen modifications
•Leisure Time and/or Recreational Equipment: hunting and fishing adaptive equipment, card holders/shufflers, modified recreation equipment, monoskis, out-riggers, local fitness club
(ideally with a swimming pool)
•Treatment of Complications: decubitus ulcer closure, tendon releases, revision surgery, fungal infections, ingrown hairs, sores
•Transportation and Vehicle Modifications: hand controls, left foot accelerator, vans •Medication and Supplies: prescription and over the counter medications, skin care, wound care •Vocational/Training Assessments •Aids for Independent Function: adaptive cutlery, adaptive computer aids, one-handed aids •Durable Medical Equipment: bath bench/chair, lift chair, touch lamps, environmental control unit reclining liftchair, walkers, canes, crutches, reachers •Orthopedic Equipment and/or Other Durable Medical Equipment: walkers, canes, crutches *Note: Each life care plan is individualized based on need and may not have every element listed
Steps in Preparing a Life Care Plan
1.After being properly retained, the AAF office will request and review appropriate records regarding the client’s past and current care. We ask for a signed medical release so that, if documents are missing, the AAF staff can begin the process of gathering needed records. 2.Typically an AAF staff member will schedule an initial contact with the client and conduct a detailed intake and evaluation interview, activity assessment, and when needed, a home evaluation checklist. 3.Following the records review and initial interview, AAF staff begin the process of developing a working model of the life care plan chart. This model is based on elements identified in the records and intake regarding both past and current care, as well as equipment appropriate to the level of the client's disability. 4.Based on this working draft, AAF begins a detailed process of Internet research and telephone contact with various vendors and/or providers of good and services to gather cost of care information. This process involves calling multiple prosthetic vendors, physicians, actual care providers (when available) and others to determine the market value of recommended goods and/or services. 5.During the research phase, a trip will be scheduled to the client’s home. During the site visit, the intake process will continue as a detailed home and equipment evaluation will be performed involving taking photographs and measurements regarding accessibility and probable home modification recommendations. In addition, all equipment currently being used at the time of the site visit will be evaluated and photographed. The client will be observed in his home setting and his use of the various aids which he uses in activities of daily living. 6.Following return from the site visit the AAF staff begin the process of refining the LCP chart and preparing this document for physician review. Once the document is completed it is sent to a physician (ideally a Physiatrist) for their input and recommendations. The physician grants the AAF permission and their name is added at the bottom of the chart noting that they have reviewed and approved the LCP. 7.The photographs, evaluations, and cost research are then organized into a 3-ring binder and tabbed for easy access and review. A secondary notebook is used to provide general amputation articles that should be useful to the client in their rehabilitation and disability educational process. 8.Once the above steps have been completed the AAF life care planner is ready to present this information by deposition and/or trial testimony. The time to testimony readiness is approximately 45 to 60 working days from start to finish of the report preparation. Our time frame may be longer or shorter depending on the difficulty of the case and availability and/or access to records and other resources.
What Areas Does A Life Care Plan Consider?
If you would like more information about our LIfe Care Planning Services, click here.
American Amputee Foundation, Inc.
P.O. Box 94227
North Little Rock, AR 72190
501-835-9290 / 501-835-9292 Fax