Rehabilitation psychiatry: what patients say

In this section you can find out more about people's experiences of living with complex mental health conditions, and their experience of psychiatric care.What is rehabilitation psychiatry and who is it for?

Rehabilitation is a service for adults with complex psychosis, described by an expert by experience as "a service to help people recover from the difficulties of longer-term mental health problems. It aims to support people who still find it difficult to cope with everyday living and to get on with other people. It aims to help people deal with problems of living, to restore their confidence and living skills and to help them live as independently as possible."

The overarching principles of rehabilitation are:

  • To be embedded within local mental healthcare services
  • To provide a recovery-orientated approach for patients, with shared goals and a sense of optimism
  • To deliver person-centred care through collaboration and shared decision making
  • To offer the least restrictive environment, supporting progress to greater independence
  • To recognise that some people need supported accommodation in the long term.

View the NICE guidelines for rehabilitation psychiatry.

What service users say

We've worked with service users and carer representatives to gather stories from people with lived experience of complex mental health conditions and rehabilitation services.

The stories that were shared with us highlight some important themes, about the impact of trauma, the limitations of acute wards in supporting long term recovery, and the power of rehabilitation psychiatry. You can access these below.

Please note, the views expressed are those of individuals with lived experience, and do not necessarily represent the views of the Royal College of Psychiatry, or of the Faculty.

Read more to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry