Conference Overview

Who should come?
The target audience includes mental health practitioners (e.g., doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, social workers, peer support workers), researchers, service developers/managers, policy planners, and postgraduate research students. Simultaneous interpretation (English−Mandarin) for selective sessions will be available.

Recovery approach
Mental illness not only affects the individuals concerned, by increasing their risk of physical health problems and reducing their quality of life, but also affects family, caregivers, and friends. As deinstitutionalization has become a global trend, there is a need for effective recovery-oriented services for these individuals.

Although there is no single definition of the concept of recovery for mental health problems, the concept emphasizes hope, self-management strategies, empowerment, peer support, managing risk and responsibility, and it is possible for people with mental illness to regain a meaningful life despite persistent symptoms. “Recovery” is often referred to as a process, an outcome, a set of guiding principles, a vision, a conceptual framework (or a lens), and lately a collection of good evidence-based practices. In some cases, “practice-based evidence” is also examined.

Why RSP 4.0?
Broadly speaking, among international practitioners and research communities, the development of the recovery approach in mental health is viewed as going through three stages or “generations”, namely: I) focusing on understanding the narratives and lived experience of individuals with mental illness or mental health issues, II) development of instruments and their psychometric properties to measure the recovery of individuals and the critical elements embedded in healthcare services that facilitate or hinder a person’s recovery, and III) defining different kinds of recovery-oriented services and technologies (e.g., peer support services, recovery college, strengths model case management, supported employment, wellness recovery action plan) and examining the effectiveness of interventions. We argue that we are now entering Generation 4.0, which concerns not only establishing the evidence for recovery-oriented services but also scaling up interventions for the wider community and informing and shaping policy planning in the mental health sector.

Burden of Mental Illness

  1. Mental illness is a significant global public health issue. A recent systematic review and meta-analysis showed that the average 12-month prevalence of common mental disorders was 17.6% and the lifetime prevalence was 29.2% across the globe. It is predicted that the global cost of mental illness will surge to US$6.0 trillion by 2030 as populations grow and age.
  2. The Hong Kong Mental Morbidity Survey, completed in 2013, found that the prevalence for common mental disorders in the past week was 13.3% among individuals aged 16 to 75 (Lam et al., 2015).
  3. The World Health Organization stated in 2004 that a mental health policy is “an essential and powerful tool for the mental health section in any ministry of health”. The pressing need for an explicit policy to address these increasing burdens pose challenges for scholars, human service professionals, and policymakers, and call for more research.

Critical issues for discussion

  1. The recovery approach as a form of behavioural health intervention in in-patient and community-based mental health settings.
  2. Application of the recovery approach in cross-cultural settings: insights gained.
  3. Recovery-oriented policy: Success, sustainability and challenges.
  4. Three decades of the recovery approach bringing changes to services and policy: where to from here?

Organised by