Ongoing Program Development
We have learned that the best resource for informing the direction and development of our program is the participants themselves. Patients are our most effective teachers because they are living the process of recovery. We encourage peer leadership and feedback within groups. We value the honest feedback we have received from program members and have tried to adapt accordingly. We often seek immediate advice during group sessions, from the “consultants” or “jury of peers” themselves, when a situation arises that warrants careful and wider consideration. We feel that soliciting feedback and monitoring treatment outcomes, as well as looking at our own and our colleagues’ attitudes toward treatment, are the best ways to judge and monitor the success of a recovery program. Two valuable techniques for seeking feedback are:
- distributing an anonymous patient survey to all participants, seeking their honest feedback. We leave the room, allowing five to ten uninterrupted minutes to fill this out and place in a sealed box, only to be opened later.
- distributing a professional survey on attitudes of the professionals who work within our program, to better understand which of our attitudes are helpful and which are not.