Recently embraced by consumers, families, providers, and the President’s New Freedom Commission for Mental Health, 2003.

Recovery can be defined as:

  • Regaining meaningful social roles in society as one grows beyond the catastrophic effects of mental illness.
  • A deeply personal, unique process of changing one’s attitudes, values, feelings, goals, skills and/or roles.
  • Maintaining as much freedom, independence and autonomy as possible, making as many decisions as possible for oneself

Recovery does not necessarily mean:

  • The absence of symptoms
  • The absence of need for medication or other therapies

Underlying assumptions of the Recovery Model:

  • Recovery from severe psychiatric disabilities is achievable
  • Recovery is not a function of one’s theory about the causes of mental illness
  • Recovery requires a well-organized support system
  • A holistic view of mental illness that focuses on the person, not just the symptoms