Recovery as an Organising Construct – Bill White Interviews Larry Davidson

William L White and Larry Davidson are two of my recovery ‘heroes’. In this 2013 paper from his website, Bill interviews Larry about mental health recovery. As the former says, Larry was ‘one of the earliest pioneers in studying and promoting the concept of recovery related to severe mental illness.’ Here are Larry’s answers to two of Bill’s questions. [I have shortened the paragraphs for easier online reading.]

‘Bill White: How is the emergence of recovery as a new organizing paradigm changing the design and delivery of mental health services in the United States?

Larry Davidson: I think the biggest change that the recovery paradigm has introduced, and the change that poses the most difficulty for traditional clinicians to understand and accept, is that recovery is primarily the responsibility of the person rather than the practitioner.

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Recovery Vision: New paradigm, new questions, new answers

I’ve just watched this wonderful talk (from 2001) by Bill Anthony, one of the pioneers in recovery-based care in mental health. [Bill starts his talk at 25’20” into the video]

Bill describes a metaphor for explaining a paradigm shift, such as the paradigm shift to recovery-based care in mental health.

This metaphor is that mankind once thought the world was flat. This understanding led to certain questions such as, “How far do I sail before I fall off the end of the earth?” Once mankind learnt the world was round, these questions were redundant. We asked different questions.

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‘Social Inclusion and Recovery: A Model for Mental Health Practice’ by Julie Repper & Rachel Perkins

41F08WRN58L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX342_SY445_CR,0,0,342,445_SH20_OU02_I am very impressed by this book and highly recommend it for all people working in the mental health and addiction fields. It is informative, easy to read and considers a wide range of practical issues. It focuses on how we can best help people with mental health problems gain meaningful and satisfying lives.

I’ve written one blog based on material in this book – What is Recovery? – and more will appear shortly. Here is what appears on the book’s back cover:

‘The starting point of this book is the lived experience of mental health problems and recovery, articulated by many of those who have survived and thrived with mental health difficulties.

On the basis of the myriad individual journeys contained in their accounts, the book explores the day-to-day supportive and facilitative role of nurses and direct care staff as allies in the recovery process.

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Sapphire’s Recovery Story: ‘It Should All Be About the Person’

Not only shows how methadone, at an appropriate dose, can bring stability to a person’s life, but also emphasises the importance of person-centred treatment. Things went well when Sapphire was intimately involved in decisions about her treatment, but poorly when professionals took sole control. (7,610 words)

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