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Int J Soc Psychiatry. 2005 Mar;51(1):45-54.

Goals of new long-stay patients in supported housing: a UK study.

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Unit for Social and Community Psychiatry of St Bartholomew's and the Royal London School of Medicine (Queen Mary, University of London), Newham Centre for Mental Health, UK.



This study assessed the goals 'new' long-stay clients aim to achieve by being in supported housing (SH), compared the goals stated by clients and staff, and tested whether subgroups of clients can be identified on the basis of their goals, quality of life and psychopathology.


Interviews were conducted with 41 clients and 39 staff of supported houses in London and Essex, UK. Descriptive, content and cluster analyses were used to analyse the results.


Clients' most frequently reported goal was moving to independent housing, followed by staying healthy, and increasing living skills. A comparison of goals reported by clients and staff showed poor or no agreement between them. Cluster analyses identified two clusters of clients. Cluster A (n = 23) contained those with no stated goals (or with the aim of staying healthy), lower quality of life, and more psychopathology; cluster B (n = 18) included those with an aim to move to independent housing, better quality of life, and less psychopathology.


In the UK, more staff training may be needed to identify and achieve the goals of the 'new' long-stay clients. For a subgroup of these clients, SH may still be a long-term care setting; while for another subgroup, new forms of rehabilitation in SH and better opportunities to leave SH may have to be developed. More conceptual and practical efforts are needed to manage the transformation of many settings from homes for life to transitional places where residents receive specific interventions.

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