Recovery to Practice (RTP)

RTP is an initiative to promote recovery-based principles and practices for psychologists and students.

What Is Mental Health Recovery?

Recovery from mental disorders and/or substance use disorders is a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life and strive to reach their full potential. Through the Recovery Support Strategic Initiative, SAMHSA has delineated four major dimensions that support a life in recovery:

  • Health: overcoming or managing one’s disease(s) or symptoms — for example, abstaining from use of alcohol, illicit drugs and non-prescribed medications if one has an addiction problem — and for everyone in recovery, making informed, healthy choices that support physical and emotional wellbeing.

  • Home: a stable and safe place to live.

  • Purpose: meaningful daily activities such as a job, school, volunteerism, family caretaking or creative endeavors, and the independence, income and resources to participate in society.

  • Community: relationships and social networks that provide support, friendship, love and hope.

Overview of the Recovery to Practice Initiative

Originally funded by a subcontract from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), from 2010 through 2014 the overall RTP initiative had two primary purposes: to develop an online resource on recovery principles and practices for mental health professionals across the major mental health disciplines, and to develop recovery-focused trainings for mental health professionals. 

Through SAMHSA's contractor, Development Services Group, APA is assessed the degree to which mental health recovery has been integrated in the field of psychology and developed a set of training modules for psychologists and students.

Components of Recovery Wheel

Figure 1.  The ten components of recovery are shown above

We have developed a curriculum that:

  1. Enhances the current psychology training system by emphasizing recovery outcomes as the basis for clinical care.

  2. Enhances the recovery knowledge, skills and attitudes of students, supervisors and administrators in psychology.

  3. Is consistent with and will enhance the current accreditation standards.

The APA Recovery to Practice Curriculum

Consistent with our training goals, the APA Recovery to Practice initiative has developed a curriculum of 15 modules, which are available to the public in full, free of charge. The link below will provide a more detailed summary of each module, as well as access to both the module text and a supplementary PowerPoint presentation.

Connect With Us

We invite psychologists, consumers, family members and other individuals who are interested in this initiative to stay in touch with us. You can connect with us in one of the following ways:

  • Sign up to receive updates about the RTP curriculum.

  • Join our public email list. You will be able to communicate with others who are interested in RTP and recovery. We will also update you periodically with information on the project and ways you might be able to participate.

  • Email us directly.

  • Call us at (202) 336-6127.