While the term “recovery” was originally applied to substance use conditions, in recent decades, there has been growing recognition that it also applies to mental health. People diagnosed with all mental health conditions, including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, can and do recover in the community – given the right mix of easily accessible supports and services.
The Substance and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines recovery as “a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to achieve their full potential.”
- 70% to 90% of individuals with mental health conditions experience a significant reduction in symptoms and improved quality of life with treatments and supports.
- Studies show that recovery oriented programs lead to fewer symptoms and an improved overall quality of life.
- A large body of data suggest that optimism about the outcome from schizophrenia is justified.
Promoting Recovery Outcomes
We need to invest in recovery, which means investing in people and holding providers and systems accountable for increasing recovery outcomes, which include:
- Permanent supportive housing
- Employment and educational opportunities
- Access to social support in the community
- A sense of meaning and purpose in life
- A sense of empowerment, or control over one’s life and treatment decisions
- SAMHSA’s Ten Components of Mental Health Recovery
- Recovery from Severe Mental Illnesses: Research Evidence and Implications for Practice
- Mental Health Recovery: What Helps and What Hinders?
- The vision of recovery today: what it is and what it means for services
- 100 Ways to Support Recovery: a Guide for Mental Health Professionals
- Does the scientific evidence support the recovery model?
- Measuring Recovery: A Toolkit for Mental Health Providers in New York City
- Recovery Oriented Systems Indicators