Recovery in Mental Health: Reshaping scientific and clinical responsibilities


Winner of Medical Journalists’ Association Specialist Readership Award 2010

Recovery is widely endorsed as a guiding principle of mental health policy. Recovery brings new rules for services, e.g. user involvement and person-centred care, as well as new tools for clinical collaborations, e.g. shared decision making and psychiatric advance directives. These developments are complemented by new proposals regarding more ethically consistent anti-discrimination and involuntary treatment legislation, as well as participatory approaches to evidence-based medicine and policy.

Recovery is more than a bottom up movement turned into top down mental health policy in English-speaking countries. Recovery integrates concepts that have evolved internationally over a long time. It brings together major stakeholders and different professional groups in mental health, who share the aspiration to overcome current conceptual reductionism and prognostic negativism in psychiatry.

Recovery is the consequence of the achievements of the user movement. Most conceptual considerations and decisions have evolved from collaborations between people with and without a lived experience of mental health problems and the psychiatric service system.  Many of the most influential publications have been written by users and ex-users of services and work-groups that have brought together individuals with and without personal experiences as psychiatric patients.

In a fresh and comprehensive look, this book covers definitions, concepts and developments as well as consequences for scientific and clinical responsibilities. Information on relevant history, state of the art and transformational efforts in mental health care is complemented by exemplary stories of people who created through their lives and work an evidence base and direction for Recovery.

This book was originally published in German.  The translation has been fully revised, references have been amended to include the English-language literature and new material has been added to reflect recent developments. It features a Foreword by Helen Glover who relates how there is more to recovery than the absence or presence of symptoms and how health care professionals should embrace the growing evidence that people can reclaim their lives and often thrive beyond the experience of a mental illness.

Comments on German edition:

"It is fully packed with useful information for practitioners, is written in jargon free language and has a good reading pace."
Theodor Itten, St. Gallen, Switzerland and Hamburg, Germany

"This book is amazingly positive. It not only talks about hope, it creates hope. Its therapeutic effects reach professional mental health workers, service users, and carers alike. Fleet-footed and easily understandable, at times it reads like a suspense novel."
Andreas Knuf, pro mente sana, Switzerland

'"This is the future of psychiatry"' cheered a usually service-oriented manager after reading the book. We might not live to see it.'
Ilse Eichenbrenner, Soziale Psychiatrie, Germany

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About the author

Michaela Amering is well-known for her work on quality of life and recovery in severe mental disorders.

Margit Schmolke is a psychological psychotherapist in private practice and a lecturer, training analyst and supervisor at the German Academy for Psychoanalysis in Munich, Germany. Her special fields are the protective factors and resilience in persons with severe psychiatric disorders and psychotherapy of psychosis.

Currently she is member the board of directors of the German Society of Group Dynamics and Group Psychotherapy and member of the WPA Section on Preventive Psychiatry.

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Additional Information

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Published on
Feb 17, 2009
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Medical / General
Medical / Psychiatry / General
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This content is DRM protected.
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