Psychoeducation and Problem-Solving Therapy as an Integrative Model of Mutual-Help Groups for People with Severe Mental Disorders: A Report from Brazil

Community Ment Health J. 2020 Apr;56(3):489-497. doi: 10.1007/s10597-019-00505-6. Epub 2019 Nov 15.


This case study describes the "Entrelaços" Peer Support Program, a psychoeducational program of a psychiatric institution in the city of Rio de Janeiro that admitted, between 2011 and 2019, 246 people comprising family members and patients to participate in eight educational seminars followed by multifamily problem-solving groups in cycles that were 18 months in duration. Ninety percent of the participants who completed the program decided to create 7 mutual-help groups in the community independent of technicians and the institution. Community groups have already served spontaneously more than 214 families. They have organized scientific, social and anti-stigma events, expanded their social support network and demonstrated empowerment by switching from service users to peer providers to receive new families. This work is based on a pioneering model in Brazil that integrates psychoeducation with problem-solving therapy, spreading the benefits of education and peer-support with lower cost and greater representativeness.

Keywords: Mental health; Peer-support; Problem-solving therapy; Psychoeducation; Recovery.

MeSH terms

  • Brazil
  • Family
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders* / therapy
  • Psychotherapy
  • Social Support