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Article   |    
The Assertive Community Treatment Worker: An Emerging Role and Its Implications for Professional Training
Thomas F. Witheridge
Psychiatric Services 1989; doi:
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The author gratefully acknowledges the contributions of Jerry Dincin, Ph.D., Daniel Wasmer, B.S.W., Deborah Allness, M.S.W., William Knoedler, M.D., Gary Bond, Ph.D., Virginia M. Selleck, Ph.D., Lawrence Appleby, Ph.D., and the coordinators, staff, members, and families of the Thresholds Bridge Program.

Thresholds Bridge Program, 2700 North Lakeview Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60614

1989 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

Assertive community treatment programs are designed to prevent the rehospitalization or homelessness of long-term mental health consumers and to improve their quality of life through the provision of intensive, "in vivo" help with everyday activities. The role of the assertive community treatment worker begins with the identification and engagement of appropriate consumers; proceeds to the development and implementation of practical intervention plans; includes home visiting, in-the-field skill development, and resource brokering, with an emphasis on concrete problem solving; includes close collaboration with inpatient workers and families; and entails the assumption of ultimate professional responsibility for the consumers' well-being. To prepare students for this role, training programs should strengthen their curricula in the areas of professional attitudes, values, and belieft; biological, psychological, sociological, and historical foundations; and intervention methods appropriate for long-term consumers.

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