Wellness Recovery Action Plans and Advance Directives
A Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) is a tool to use for helping you stay well and to be ready for times when you are not doing so well. The Wellness Recovery Action Plans were developed by Mary Ellen Copeland. Ms. Copeland developed the WRAP for herself as someone with experience of mental illness. They have been found to be a powerful tool in recovery.
An Advance Directive is a legal document that says who you would want to take over decision making for you if you are unable to make good decisions for yourself.
Wellness Recovery Action Plans
A Wellness Recovery Action Plan (or a "WRAP" plan) is a written plan you develop to help manage your mental illness and resume stability and wellness. Ask your mental health helper at your agency how you might find a WRAP class in your area. If you want to, add creating a WRAP plan to your agency recovery plan. A WRAP plan includes:
- Creating a wellness "toolbox" for self-care in everyday situations
- Identifying early warning signs and triggers
- Establishing an action plan to use when experiencing distress
- Creating a crisis plan for others to use on your behalf (advance directive)
- Creating a post crisis plan to help you get back on track
Find out more about WRAP plans.
A mental health advance directive is a legal document you can create describing what you want to happen if you become so ill from a mental illness that your judgment is impaired and/or you are unable to communicate effectively. It can inform others about what treatment you want or don't want, and it can identify a person to whom you have given the authority to make decisions on your behalf.
An Advance Directive may be part of a WRAP plan or you can also write an Advance Directive by itself. Get more information about Advance Directives from DSHS.
The University of Pennsylvania Collaborative on Community Integration recently released an easy-to-use, practical tool for creating a psychaitric Advance Directive. To better understand and address planning obstacles, the Advance Self-Advocacy Plan (ASAP) Guidebook and Planning Sheets were developed with extensive input from consumers who have been hospitalized for psychiatric care and also from providers of mental health services. Download a free copy.
The Washington State Department of Health has created a free registry for Washington residents to post their health care directives. This free registry includes Mental Health Advance Directives.