The role of services in mental health recovery: A qualitative examination of service experiences among individuals diagnosed with serious mental illness

Cynthia A. Lietz, Jeffrey R. Lacasse, Megan J. Hayes, Justine Cheung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Mental health services are provided to people diagnosed with mental disorders to foster rehabilitation by enhancing emotional and behavioral functioning. The purpose of this project was to understand from the perspective of service recipients what aspects of services they found most helpful in facilitating the process of recovery. Using a sequential explanatory design, a quantitative screening tool was used to identify a criterion sample of people who had been diagnosed with serious mental illness and reported they achieved functional recovery. A sample of 16 adults who met study criteria participated in qualitative interviews to understand what aspects of mental health services they felt contributed to their recovery. Thematic analysis uncovered 7 themes that emerged from their stories of service experiences describing both the content and process of services they found most beneficial. Although some descriptions of services were consistent with recovery-oriented practice principles, others contradicted the mandate put forth 10 years ago by the New Freedom Commission on Mental Health. Findings suggest more efforts should be made to evaluate the degree to which current mental health services adhere to strengths-based, person-centered practice principles and offer a hopeful outlook regarding the possibility of recovery from mental disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-188
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of the Society for Social Work and Research
Volume5
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2014

Keywords

  • Community mental health services
  • Consumer participation
  • Mental disorders
  • Psychiatric
  • Recovery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

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