Competing priorities: staff perspectives on supporting recovery

01 Jul 2015
Le Boutillier C, Slade M, Lawrence V, Bird VJ, Chandler R, Farkas M, Harding C, Larsen J, Oades LG, Roberts G, Shepherd G, Thornicroft G, Williams J, Leamy M


Recovery has come to mean living a life beyond mental illness, and recovery orientation is policy in many countries. The aims of this study were to investigate what staff say they do to support recovery and to identify what they perceive as barriers and facilitators associated with providing recovery-oriented support. Data collection included ten focus groups with multidisciplinary clinicians (n = 34) and team leaders (n = 31), and individual interviews with clinicians (n = 18), team leaders (n = 6) and senior managers (n = 8). The identified core category was Competing Priorities, with staff identifying conflicting system priorities that influence how recovery-oriented practice is implemented. Three sub-categories were: Health Process Priorities, Business Priorities, and Staff Role Perception. Efforts to transform services towards a recovery orientation require a whole-systems approach.