Options Counseling Training Resources and Tools
Mastering the "art" of options counseling requires training and practice. Many states are in the process of developing training curricula for options counselors. This section contains training agendas, power point slides, handouts, and additional reading as resources for use in developing trainings on options counseling for use by ADRCs, as well as other long term supports and services initaitives, such as participant-directed programs and care transitions programs.
Orientation training for options counselors should include an introduction to the ADRC, comprehensive information about the public and private resource options in the community, considerations related to specific populations served (e.g. working with individuals with physical disabilities), strategies for how to provide effective decision support, and the importance of documentation and follow-up. On-going training should review orientation topics and include an assessment of training needs from staff. Weekly staff meetings of options counselors support continuing education by offering a forum to discuss scenarios, community resources, policies and procedures, and decision support tools. Regular staff meetings also support a team approach and atmosphere.
The Technical Assistance Exchange (TAE) formed a group of operating ADRC states in the fall of 2008. The group also suggested the TAE develop two on-line courses – one for program planners (Options Counseling for Program Planners)
and one for staff delivering options counseling (The Art of Options Counseling)
Essential Components of Options Counseling
AoA is currently working with 19 grantee states in a collaborative process to develop national standards for Options Counseling. Through that process the following essential components of Options Counseling have emerged;
The following pages include lists of resources collected by the ADRC-TAE related to OC Training and available for download.
- A personal interview,
- Identification of desired and available options (including informal supports and public, and private resources),
- A facilitated decision-support process (weighing pros/cons of various options),
- Assistance to develop an action plan or LTSS plan that is directed by the individual,
- Connections to services and supports, and
- General Options Counselor Tools
- Motivational Interviewing Tools
- Visual Tools to use with Individuals During Options Counseling
- Tools for Supervisors
- Evaluation Surveys and Tools
Connect with Your Peers
Use our discussion forum to write a comment about these materials and how you have used them in your own work or ask a question of your peers about options counseling.