Personal Outcomes Approach

What is a Personal Outcomes Approach?

The values and principles underpinning a personal outcomes approach are summarised in the Values and Principles paper:

Personal Outcomes Values and Principles Paper May16 [PDF, 433Kb]

A personal outcomes approach is underpinned by three core elements:

  • Engaging with individuals using services and carers about:
    • what is important to them in life
    • why these things are important (outcomes)
    • how to go about achieving these things
    • who will be involved, including the person, other people in their life and community, and services
    • —when and where etc.
    • extent to which their personal outcomes are being achieved, what helps and hinders
  • Recording of information on outcomes:
    • Qualitatively in a language meaningful to the person – the personal outcomes story
    • And that may then be summarised using personal outcomes scales
  • Using information for decision making including:
    • Individual actions, care and support
    • Service delivery and improvement
    • Planning and commissioning
    • Enriching performance monitoring

A personal outcomes approach to assessment, planning and review aims to shift engagement away from service-led approaches.  This involves everyone working together to achieve the best possible impact on the individual’s life.


The philosophy emphasises the strengths, capacity and resilience of individuals, builds upon natural support systems and includes consideration of wider community based resources.  The approach is consistent with policy priorities to engage people using services, personalisation, and enablement and an assets-based approach to health.