Client Stories and Testimonials

Theresa – How relationship impacts results

“Theresa” (name is changed) has been supported by PLAN of PA for some time. She has a Mental Illness that significantly and persistently affects her life and the lives of those who care for her. Her family is very involved and love her deeply. In recent years, her parents have developed some serious health issues of their own. The intensity of Theresa’s needs has caused a good deal of strain on the health of family members as well as their relationships with Theresa. As a result, PLAN of PA intensified our involvement with Theresa about 2 years ago.

When PLAN of PA first re-engaged, Theresa was extremely resistant. She had refused medication that helped her see things more clearly, she was inconsistent in her ability to show up for work, and she was in a living situation that was not productive for her. Through consistent effort, her Care Manager was able to gain her trust. He was there for her through some significant disappointments and demonstrated a real interest in what mattered to her. Over time, the relationship they developed resulted in Theresa allowing her Care Manager to support her in changing her housing situation and getting a new job. She is now taking the medication that helps her stay on track with what matters most to her. She is doing well where she is living. She also likes her job (most days) and sees it as a way to have more independence. While she would still like to drive a car, she has agreed to use public transportation for now and looks forward to a goal of someday driving again.

We believe that the biggest difference we have made with Theresa and others that we support is through developing a relationship. Since we are able to spend more time with each person, we can demonstrate how we are on their side and work with the person to achieve positive outcomes. The path is often difficult and lengthy, but we persevere. While we have many contacts, solid experience and a good deal of knowledge, it is truly the relationship with the person that makes the difference.


Harry – Housing & Benefits

“Harry” (not his real name) was a young adult living at home with his parents. Harry has a mental health diagnosis that significantly impacts his ability to interpret events that occur around him and interactions with people in his life. Over a short time period Harry had been in and out of psychiatric hospitals due to extreme agitation and illogical thinking that made an ongoing relationship with him almost impossible. His parents were terribly frustrated and Harry was very distressed.

The family engaged PLAN of PA for Care Management services. Harry’s Care Manager, Christine, enrolled him on the County MH housing wait list. She also worked with a local psychiatric hospital to arrange for an extended stay. This was possible due to her success in obtaining his Medicaid benefit. Christine also obtained his rightful Social Security benefit, which would eventually pay for room and board. Harry was eligible for both of these benefits, but had not been receiving them.

Within a year, Harry moved into a supported living program in an apartment setting with a roommate who is also in the program. This program offered daily living support staff and assistance with medication management.

Harry has now experienced a good deal of stability in his life and has begun reconnecting with his family. He routinely takes his medications and the support he receives from the program where he lives is very helpful. Christine is now working to connect Harry with some specialized treatment for his specific diagnosis. She hopes Harry may someday live in his own apartment outside of the program. She believes this is possible with the right supports and services to assist him in living a happy, healthy life.

PLAN of PA’s Care Management Services Areas:

  • Vocational: Obtain employment or pursue a vocation.
  • Housing: Secure housing; Coordinate a move; Cleanup and maintenance of current housing to avoid eviction
  • Finance: Money Management, Budgeting; Shopping support; Representative Payee Bill Pay (for Care Management and Trust clients)
  • Health & Wellness: Coordinate medical appointments; Support and guide appropriate follow up as directed by medical professionals; Arrange transportation to medical appointment, etc.
  • Government Benefits Acquisition: Obtain waivers; Initiate / reinstate benefits such as Monthly SSI/ SSD payments, food stamps, Medicaid: Engage government agencies on behalf of the person with Special Needs.
  • Social Support & Connection: Connect the person to the community; Increase the strength of existing relationships; Decrease isolation.

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Client Testimonial:

Just four years ago I was dependent upon others for everything.  I could not stay out of the hospital, have friends, live on my own, or hold a job.  All I could do successfully was feel the pain of BiPolar Disorder and know despair.  Then I joined PLAN and became immersed with support.  I felt for the first time accepted and understood.  In the PLAN environment, I have experienced a vast decrease in the severity of my illness.  My symptoms have decreased immensely and I cannot remember the last time I was in the hospital.  I never thought I would be well again and I am happy now.  I work part-time and have lived independently for four years.  I am pleased with this but happier that I have better relationships with my parents now that they don’t feel like they have to take care of me.   PLAN has given me my life back, and I am forever grateful.”  –  Quote from a PLAN client

 

Client Testimonial:

“PLAN of PA provided positive, practical & caring directional communication skills which benefited both client and caregiver.” – Quote from a PLAN client