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Family Psychoeducation for Serious Mental Illness$
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Harriet P. Lefley

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195340495

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195340495.001.0001

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Family Interventions In Major Mental Illness

Family Interventions In Major Mental Illness


Family Psychoeducation for Serious Mental Illness

Harriet P. Lefley

Oxford University Press

This chapter compares different models of family interventions in serious mental illness. Family therapy has been based on a premise of systemic dysfunction, although some newer models question pre-existing pathology and focus on strengthening coping skills; family consultation is limited to helping families address specific concerns. Family psychoeducation (FPE) and family education (FE) have similar core content. However, FPE focuses on client outcome, while briefer FE, taught by trained family members, is designed to help key relatives understand and cope with the illness. Two other multi-family models include psychoeducational support groups, offered by some agencies as an ongoing supportive resource for clients' families or for the general public. Family support groups, which are also open ended and continuous, are usually extensions of advocacy groups such as NAMI or MHA. Some research data show positive effects of FE for participants. However, only FPE fully satisfies the EBP criteria established in the introduction for treatment of clients.

Keywords:   family therapy, family consultation, family education, family psychoeducation, support groups

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