About the Creative Practice and Mutual Recovery Initiative

Overview

When considering the attributes that modern-day healthcare is frequently accused of lacking, it is all too easy to overlook one of the most precious of all: humanity. The nascent discipline of health humanities aims to address this critical shortcoming.

Central to the health humanities is the notion of mutual recovery – the idea that the sharing of creative practice and resources can promote resilience in mental health and well-being among professionals, informal carers and service users.

This concept is emerging at a time when the burden of mental health remains considerable and a renewed emphasis on biomedical and neuroscientific solutions is accompanied by little confidence of success.

At present, according to some studies, mental health problems affect as many as one in three or possibly even one in two people and constitute the second-greatest health burden after cardiovascular disease. Current community care approaches continue to deliver mixed results. Social isolation and exclusion are still growing. There are mounting fears that services users' trust is being undermined and that the public is becoming increasingly sceptical about mental health services.

In the face of these challenges, the role and potential benefits of mutual recovery offer a new and valuable research theme. Crucially, they provide fertile ground for innovation , involvement and impact.


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