Mental health recovery competencies for mental health workers: a Delphi study

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Lakeman, R 2010, 'Mental health recovery competencies for mental health workers: a Delphi study', Journal of Mental Health, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 62-74.

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Background: Mental health recovery is a concept that is now widely promoted. Lengthy sets of competency statements have been published to assist mental health workers become more recovery orientated in their work. However, there continues to be a lack of clarity around what constitutes recovery focused practice or which competencies are most helpful to assist people towards recovery.

Aims: To identify the most important or valued mental health worker competencies/practices that are supportive of mental health recovery.

Method: Experts by experience participated in an online Delphi survey to rate the importance of recovery competency statements, to reach consensus on the most important competencies and provide examples of specific practices that demonstrate competent practice.

Results: The top rated competencies emphasized mental health workers listening to and respecting the person's view points, conveying a belief that recovery is possible and recognizing, respecting and promoting the person's resources and capacity for recovery.

Conclusions: These results serve to clarify some boundaries around recovery-focused practices and demark these from other examples of good mental health practice.

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