Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate


  • Center City Campus
  • College of Rehabilitation Sciences

Degree Earned

  • Certificate

Program Length

12 months

Program Type

  • Online


An entry level (bachelors, masters or clinical doctorate) professional degree in health, education or related field

Program Contact

Name: Christina Calhoun Thielen
Position: Project Coordinator, Center for Outcomes & Measurement and Clinical Research

Contact Admissions

Contact Number(s):

The Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate is designed for inter-disciplinary professionals with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree with a desire to develop and use a Life Care Plan (LCP).  Upon completion, participants will have completed the pre-training hours required to pursue the Certified Life Care Planner (CLCP) credential through the International Commission on Health Care Certification (ICHCC).  Jefferson has an online application that allows candidates to submit all required application material directly to the application platform.

The skill and training proposed in this program are not included in any entry-level clinical education and therefore the Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate will advance one’s education and professional opportunities.  The life care planner has an essential role in ensuring the needs of a client with a variety of conditions and disabilities are identified and planned for.  Those who complete the Graduate Certificate will understand the purpose, content, process of development, utilization of the LCP, and will be able to critique and contribute to a LCP.   Students will have the pre-training hours required for the Certified Life Care Planner (CLCP) credential through the ICHCC and pursue a career as a life care plan expert.

Professionals involved in health care and education would benefit from this program, as the Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate will provide an overview of concepts and disease\diagnoses-specific considerations to include in the LCP, and training on how to present and defend LCP content.  For those working with persons with catastrophic injuries and chronic conditions in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, community based practices and in the home, the Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate will provide an overview of LCP concepts and of how the medical, nursing and therapy teams contribute to the LCP. 

Distinguishing Features of Jefferson's Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate

  • The LCP Graduate Certificate coursework (four 3-credit courses) meet rigorous criteria set by the college and university curriculum committees and approval processes.  
  • Course material is current and up to date with most recent information.
  • Course material (readings, resources, video) are made available on our university electronic platform, Canvas.
  • A scaffolding approach is used throughout the courses to build your knowledge and comfort for creating a life care plan.
  • Students have access to the university library for all resources and materials.
  • The primary textbooks are provided electronically via the library at no additional cost.
  • An lawyer, who is also a credentialled Life Care Planner and Vocational Rehabilitation Courselor, teaches the litigation content of the curriculum.
  • The curriculum includes modules regarding "the business of LCP" for those who are thinking about creating a business.
  • This graduate certificate not only prepares you to obtain your LCP credential, it is also designed to prepare you to be competent in all aspects of LCP.

What is Life Care Planning?

Life Care Planning is an interdisciplinary specialty performed by trained healthcare and education professionals. According to ICHCC "a Life Care Plan (LCP) is a comprehensive document that chronicals the medical and rehabilitative histories of a person who has chronic health care needs and/or who has experienced some form of trauma that has altered the individual’s functional capabilities regarding activities of daily living and/or the essential functions of work where applicable. The plan identifies the respective diagnosis(es) related directly to the trauma or the chronic health condition as documented in the medical records and the evaluation records, as well as identifies required medical and rehabilitative services, medical supplies, durable medical equipment, medications, support services, the need for barrierfree living environmental/home modifications, and the costs incurred for the individual to achieve as close to premorbid functioning and independence as possible. The plan details the costs associated with maintenance of the maximum level of function achieved (independent vs. dependent), and provides a detailed projection of potential complications and their projected associated future costs if applicable.  The plan further documents the individual’s premorbid medical history to assess any potential influences of earlier medical needs on the current trauma.”  Preparation of the LCP involves extensive and comprehensive assessment of the client’s past and anticipated needs, which is accomplished, in part, by review of existing medical, nursing and therapy records and possible interviews with the medical, nursing and therapy teams involved in care.

The Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate may be used toward the pre-training hours required by the International Commission on Health Care Certification (ICHCC) for the Certified Life Care Planner (CLCP) credential. Information on the CLCP and the qualifications required by ICHCC for the CLCP credential may be found on their website.


Mary Jane "MJ" Mulcahey, PhD, OTR/L, CPPC, CLCP, FASIA Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, Jefferson College of Rehabilitation Sciences
Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Sidney Kimmel Medical College
Director, Center for Outcomes and Measurement - Jefferson College of Rehabilitation Medicine

Jeff Cockrum, JD, MA, CRC, CDMS, CLCP Consulting Faculty, Life Care Planning Graduate Certificate Program 360-819-4524