Clinicians try to promote resilience by building an effective therapeutic relationship with their clients. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is an established approach for providing services to individuals with severe mental illness who have not fared well in the regular mental health system. This work underscores the importance of a resilient therapeutic relationship in preventing relapse and assuring adherence to therapeutic outcomes. Persistent psychiatric illness takes a toll on the resilience of the client, while the relationship work takes a toll on the resilience of the clinician. This article explores the concept of relational resilience between clinician and client as a dynamic process of shared success and failure, progress and regression through cycles of crisis, stabilization, relapse, and partial recovery. This is a qualitative study exploring how ACT clinicians promote and sustain resilience and is based on interviews with social workers, nurses, occupational and recreational therapists, coordinators, and psychiatrists.
Dermot J. Hurley, BA, MSW & Richard L. O’Reilly, BA, MB, BCh, BAO, MRCPsych, FRCPC
Social Work in Mental Health, Volume 15, 2017 – Issue 6