What is Illness Management and Recovery?

Illness Management and Recovery (IMR) is a manualized evidence-based treatment focused on teaching illness self-management to persons with serious mental illness. The emphasis is on recovery by helping clients set and pursue personally meaningful goals. IMR includes 10 modules that deliver psychoeducation about mental illness, cognitive-behavioral approaches to medication management, planning for relapse prevention, social skills training to strengthen social support, and coping skills to manage symptoms of mental illness. IMR can be provided either in an individual or group format and general takes between 5-10 months to complete as individuals work progressively through the 10 modules. IMR has been found to significantly improve client functioning in various psychosocial domains including the ability to cope with symptoms, basic functioning, and overall well-being. Also, individuals who have completed IMR show greater improvements in knowledge and progress toward goals, compared with those who received care as usual.

The IMR toolkit and guidance for implementation, including training and support, can be found here.


Hasson-Ohayon I, Roe D, Kravetz S: A randomized controlled trial of the effectiveness of the illness management and recovery program. Psychiatric Services 58:1461–1466, 2007

Mueser KT, Corrigan PW, Hilton DW, et al: Illness management and recovery: a review of the research. Psychiatric Services 53:1272–1284, 2002

Mueser KT, Meyer PS, Penn DL, et al: The Illness Management and Recovery program: rationale, development, and preliminary findings. Schizophrenia Bulletin 32(suppl 1):S32–S43, 2006

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