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Self-Directed Supports (SDS) Resource eLibrary

Although the terms self-determination and self-directed supports (SDS) are often used interchangeably, they are actually two distinct concepts with unique implications.  Self-determination, being the broader of the two elements, refers to the individual having control over all aspects of his or her life, and exercising basic rights such as citizenship, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  This definition impacts activities beyond the scope of long-term care services.

Self-directed supports (also known as consumer-directed or consumer-direction) are a facet of the larger self-determination philosophy.  Stated simply, participants in long-term care programs actively direct the supports and services being provided.  …the term self-directed supports refers to a wide range of approaches designed to maximize choice and control for people who use long-term care services and supports. People who self-direct are able to hire, supervise, and fire their own direct care workers. But SDS involves many other elements as well, including control of one’s own budget for services, choice of services and supports, and decision-making authority. Though frequently used for in-home care, SDS can be used outside of the home as well for services such as transportation and supported employment.

Adapted from:  Self-Directed Supports, A Report of The Wisconsin Self-Directed Supports Cross-Unit Functional Team and the Wisconsin Self-Directed Supports Stakeholders Committee, Wisconsin Dept. of Health and Family Services, prepared by The Management Group, September 2006.

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Funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) - CFDA No. 93.768, Wisconsin Dept. of Health and Family Services/Pathways to Independence, and the Waisman Center.

Last updated on March 9, 2009 by Community Outreach Wisconsin Webmaster