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What is a Wellness & Recovery Action Plan (WRAP)?

Take Action: Plan for Wellness

What is a Wellness and Recovery Action Plan (WRAP)?

A Wellness and Recovery Action Plan is a type of Action Plan created by YOU.  This plan will be your blueprint for maintaining your serenity and balance, and for providing support should you feel yourself falling back into crisis or a state of mental “dis” order.

The Wellness and Recovery Action Plan was introduced by Mary Ellen Copland whose organization provides many resources for an individual who is interested in using this model as part of their recovery strategy.

This heroic woman demonstrated her ability to thrive and transcend her own battle with bipolar (manic depression).  She achieved a PhD, is a well known author, and has been awarded the United States Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association’s USPRA John Beard Award for outstanding contributions to the field of psychosocial rehabilitation in 2006.[i] Mary Ellen Copeland conducted research and identified the most useful and successful coping tools for people who suffer from bipolar disorder.  She developed the Wellness and Recovery Plan model of Action Planning as a result of that work and brought this powerful tool to the Recovery Community.

Although her website provides opportunities to develop your own WRAP online through her organization’s website; she also offers free resources as well.  You can explore her website at  The free resources are on her website at .  The Substance Abuse and Mental health Service Administration (SAMHSA) provides a free booklet series that was created by Mary Ellen Copeland, and can be ordered at

I chose to share this with you because I have seen firsthand the value of using this approach to managing symptoms of bipolar. The hospital that I worked in implemented the WRAP program and I witnessed individuals transform from requiring 24 hour care to full integration into the community, living independent and full lives. The Wellness and Recovery  Plan effectively integrates all of the components of recovery into a personalized process that an individual can incorporate into their ongoing daily routines. Using the personalized strategies and approaches can become a natural part of everyday life for the individual who has developed one.  The plan integrates daily coping skills, action plans for times of distress, the utilization of resources and support when an individual cannot care for him or herself, and recovery in a natural flow.  The idea is to consolidate all of your needs, and resources into one easy to use plan that you and your support system can reference.

In my next  blog, I will provide some basic essentials for you to consider when writing your Wellness and Recovery Plan.  Stay tuned and remember to send me your questions about what I am sharing with you, or topics of interest to: [email protected]

Stay Tuned

[1]  (Retrieved 2/14/15)

“USPRA Awards of Distinction (2011 nomination form)”. USPRA. (Retrieved 2/14/15).

What is a Wellness & Recovery Action Plan (WRAP)?

Dr. Barbara Bachmeier

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APA Reference
Bachmeier, D. (2015). What is a Wellness & Recovery Action Plan (WRAP)?. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 14, 2020, from


Last updated: 17 Feb 2015
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