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Transforming ‘Person-Centred’ to ‘Person-Led’ Approaches

01 May 2021

The NMHCCF believes that person-centred care needs to be realigned to become person-led approaches to care and support. Shared understandings of person-led approaches to care and support must be developed and co-designed with consumers, families/ carers.


Even though in recent times the concept of person-centred care has been widely accepted in mental health planning there is still no widespread understanding of this term or how it will guide the delivery of service. It has commonly been translated by clinicians as a care plan decided by professionals with input from the consumer.

Person-centred is intended to mean providing care to meet the needs of individual consumers in a sensitive, genuine and responsive way.  It requires putting in place systems of support that will be recovery-oriented promoting and respecting self-determination.


Person-led approaches require that clinicians and services focus on the individual, not the service. This means:

  • respecting where the individual is at now, their journey, dreams and goals
  • matching the services and support with the person’s needs
  • working in partnership with the individual, families/ carers to ascertain the person’s capacities and strengths.

NMHCCF Recommendations

The NMHCCF has advocated the person-led approach through its submission to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health. In this submission, the NMHCCF recommended ‘a move away from the stepped care model to a person-led approach.’

Download the full advoacy brief

Advocacy Brief - Transforming ‘Person-Centred’ to ‘Person-Led’ Approaches