The Whole Person Approach

The following diagram illustrates a modern approach to responding to mental illness and our site focuses on the eight areas, all of which need to be addressed for a person’s successful recovery.

whole person


A modern vision for recovery is based on a set of core values which can be identified as central to a decent quality of life. Application of such values can lead to a better quality of life for people with a mental illness.

On this site we have identified 8 components which together comprehensively encompass the important areas in a person’s life.

It is recommended that individuals, and those who care for them, consider all components in order to effectively address their needs and to help in the recovery process.

Some people in Wales with a severe mental illness and their carers are not engaging successfully with services, primarily because services do not involve them, meet their needs as they perceive them, or treat them with respect. New services should follow their requirements by reflecting the values and issues that are important to the user and carer. This would improve the safety, continuity and comprehensiveness of care.

The values set out below form the backbone of key issues that people with a severe mental illness and their carers see as central to the delivery of any services. When applied to the services, these values will provide quality, safety and public confidence. When applied to individuals, they will ensure a better quality of life which includes safety, acceptance and the ability to recover to the best of their ability.

The key values are:

  • Dignity, respect and sensitivity
  • Choice
  • Information
  • Access to services
  • Involvement in Planning
  • Communication
  • Quality
  • Safety
  • Responsiveness
  • Review

Wholehearted support for these values will lead towards a comprehensive approach to mental health care. The successes of care to date revolve around the following outcomes:-

  • Users taking the lead as far as possible in managing their illness.
  • Early recognition of mental illness and early intervention.
  • Early and holistic assessment of the needs of the individual.
  • Appropriately structured care and support, which takes into account both health and social needs of the individual.
  • Regular holistic reviews of progress and all needs with agreed modifications.
  • Immediate response in an emergency, 24 hours a day, every day of the year
  • Non-discriminatory, comprehensive services based on multi-disciplinary teamwork.
  • Comprehensive information.
  • Communications through the medium of Welsh and English according to client choice.
  • Well-informed and supported carers and other family members.
  • Communication channels linking all aspects of care and support.
  • Availability of independent advocacy.
  • Continuity of care, including possible use of “advance directives”
  • which state the user’s wishes if their condition deteriorates.