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A Contemporary Review of the Clubhouse Model of Psychosocial Rehabilitation: Past, Present, and Emerging Directions.

Psychiatric Quarterly 2023 October 6
Since the 1940s, the Clubhouse model of psychosocial rehabilitation has evolved towards a comprehensive practice of social theory and intervention. Despite the model's cost effectiveness and observational evidence of its efficacy, empirical research remains lacking. The current narrative review examines studies from recent years (2015-2021), not to assess study rigor, but to identify trends in research aims, findings, and methodology, as well as specify future research directions. A narrative review was conducted using PRISMA guidelines. Using the search term "Clubhouse," 194 articles were identified in online databases. 38 met criteria for inclusion. Most studies were qualitative (60.5%) and few utilized experimental or quasi-experimental designs (7.9%). Narrative synthesis revealed research aims and outcome variables falling into six key areas: social integration and connectedness, quality of life (QOL), recovery outcomes, relational dynamics, policy, and virtual adaptations of the model. Findings indicate that recent Clubhouse-related research trends have primarily involved studies of social connectedness, QOL, recovery, relationships, and policy, as well as studies examining the value of the virtual Clubhouse in maintaining well-being. However, heterogeneity of methodologies and measures present a critical limitation to assessing results across studies. Options for increasing experimental methodologies in this area are reviewed. Recommended future directions involve moving towards a biopsychosocial approach to clarifying the mechanisms through which the model promotes recovery-aims that may yield implications beyond the realm of serious mental illness.

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