Knowledge and attitudes of mental health professionals in Ireland to the concept of recovery in mental health: a questionnaire survey

J Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs. 2009 Aug;16(6):539-45. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2850.2009.01411.x.


Recovery is the model of care presently advocated for mental health services internationally. The aim of this study was to examine the knowledge and attitudes of mental health professionals to the concept of recovery in mental health. A descriptive survey approach was adopted, and 153 health care professionals (nurses, doctors, social workers, occupational therapists and psychologists) completed an adapted version of the Recovery Knowledge Inventory. The respondents indicated their positive approach to the adoption of recovery as an approach to care in the delivery of mental health services. However, respondents were less comfortable in encouraging healthy risk taking with service users. This finding is important because therapeutic risk taking and hope are essential aspects in the creation of a care environment that promotes recovery. Respondents were also less familiar with the non-linearity of the recovery process and placed greater emphasis on symptom management and compliance with treatment. Multidisciplinary mental health care teams need to examine their attitudes and approach to a recovery model of care. The challenge for the present and into the future is to strive to equip professionals with the necessary skills in the form of information and training.

MeSH terms

  • Demography
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Ireland
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / rehabilitation
  • Mental Disorders / therapy*
  • Occupational Health Services
  • Psychiatric Nursing*
  • Psychology*
  • Social Responsibility
  • Social Work*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Workforce