Journal article Open Access

The role of support system in improving mental health prognosis

Guttman, Maxwell

Unquestionably, a vital contributing factor to the success of patients recovering from a major mental health condition is their natural support system. As the chronicity of a person increases, their prognosis, conversely, is usually framed, justified, and projected to be less favourable than a person carrying an acute diagnosis or condition. In order to provide people with resources to improve their odds of lasting recovery, practitioners examine, assess, and make use of factors which may positively contribute to a person’s condition and outcome. This is done not only by connecting people carrying a diagnosis with the best and most appropriate treatment pathways but also by strengthening their natural networks in the community. To date, research has not evaluated methods of cultivating, strengthening, and creating new networks of support for people with a diagnosis. This presentation explores the role of support for people with a chronic mental health condition, methods for creating new, lasting community networks, and pathways for consumers to self-manage their connections to improve their odds of a full and lasting recovery. The intention is to establish clinical practices in the future that integrate more than hope into a person’s recovery journey and provide consumers with compatible life skills and interventions needed to take on the challenges of transforming the system into a more person-centred, accessible, and fully integrated partner in recovery. An effective use of discussions around prognosis means practitioners will be framing and exploring symptoms that will complicate interpersonal relationships and interfere with prosocial interactions. 

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