The Recovery Model

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One in five Americans, approximately 60 million people, have a mental illnesses (Muhlbauer, 2002).The recovery model, also referred to as recovery oriented practice, is generally understood to be defined as an approach that supports and emphasizes an individual’s potential for recovery. When discussing recovery in this approach, it is generally seen as a journey that is personal as opposed to having a set outcome. This involves hope, meaning, coping skills, supportive relationships, sense of the self, a secure base, social inclusion and many other factors. There has been an ongoing debate in theory and in practice about what constitutes ‘recovery’ or a recovery model. The major difference that should be recognized between the recovery model and the medical model is as follows: the medical model locates the abnormal behavior within an individual claiming a factor that is assumed to cause the behavior problems whereas, the recovery model tends to place stress on peer support and empowerment (Conrad and Schneider, 2009). This essay will demonstrate that the recovery model has come a long way in theory and practice and therefore, psychological well-being is achievable through this model. When looking at the recovery model from a psychiatric rehabilitation perspective, there are a number of characteristics of the recovery process that have been suggested, which include: it is possible for recovery to occur without professional intervention, however this then requires people who believe in and stand by the person in recovery; it does not include dependence on believing specific theories about the cause of the circumstance; it can occur even if symptoms happen to re-occur, but this does not affect the frequency and duration of these symp...

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.... This may push people out of the recovery process before they are ready and it challenges empowerment aspects and structural problems. It has also been argued that the recovery model attempts to hide the dominance of the medical model. This marginalizes those who do not fit into a recovery narrative. Professionals have said that majority of the people who a serious illness, such as schizophrenia, require both psychotropic and psychosocial interventions to help cure their symptoms during a crisis (Rosenson, 1993). Therefore, the recovery model has been criticized for its emphasis away from medicalization. In addition, it can be argued that that while the approach may be a useful for corrective measures, institutional and personal difficulties make it essential that there be sufficient ongoing effective support with stress management and coping in daily life.
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