Community Mental Health Teams: A Guide to Current Practices

Community Mental Health Teams (CMHTs) have evolved over the last 30-40 years to serve patients with mental illnesses who would previously have been treated in large mental hospitals. They play a pivotal role in the provision of mental health care in the developed world. Consisting of nurses, doctors, social workers, and psychologists, the people within these teams work together to care for individuals with severe mental illnesses outside the hospital. Because CMHTs have evolved, rather than been developed, little has been written about how they should work - how the multidisciplinary members of the teams can work effectively together, who should do what within the team. This is the first book to provide practical advice for those working within these teams. It addresses the needs of the individual specialists within the CMHT, and provides clinical advice based on what has been seen to work. The book also looks at the recent development of 'functional' CMHTs - Assertive Outreach, Crisis resolution, and early intervention services, describing how these teams work, their similarities, and their differences. Written by a leading authority in this field, the book will become the standard text for all those specialists working within and close to community mental health teams.