Development of the REFOCUS intervention to increase mental health team support for personal recovery

Slade, Mike, Bird, Victoria, Le Boutillier, Clair, Grey, Barbara, Larsen, John, Leamy, Mary, Oades, Lindsay and Williams, Julie (2015) Development of the REFOCUS intervention to increase mental health team support for personal recovery. British Journal of Psychiatry, 207 (6). pp. 544-550. ISSN 1472-1465

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Background: There is an emerging evidence base about best practice in supporting recovery. This is usually framed in relation to general principles, and specific pro-recovery interventions are lacking.

Aims: To develop a theoretically-based and empirically-defensible new pro-recovery manualised intervention – called the REFOCUS intervention.

Method: Seven systematic and two narrative reviews were undertaken. Identified evidence gaps were addressed in three qualitative studies. The findings were synthesised to produce the REFOCUS intervention, manual and model.

Results: The REFOCUS intervention comprises two components: recovery-promoting relationships and working practices. Approaches to supporting relationships comprise coaching skills training for staff, developing a shared team understanding of recovery, exploring staff values, a Partnership Project with people who use the service, and raising service user expectations. Working practices comprise: Understanding values and treatment preferences; Assessing strengths; and Supporting goal-striving. The REFOCUS model describes the causal pathway from the REFOCUS intervention to improved recovery.

Conclusion: The REFOCUS intervention is an empirically-supported pro-recovery intervention for use in mental health services. It will be evaluated in a multisite cluster randomised controlled trial (ISRCTN02507940).

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an author-produced electronic version of an article accepted for publication in the British Journal of Psychiatry. The definitive publisher-authenticated version is available online at
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Health Sciences
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Slade, Prof Mike
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2015 11:37
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 17:21

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