Absence of Positive Results for Flexible Assertive Community Treatment. What is the next Approach?

Clinical Practice & Epidemiology in Mental Health 26 Sept 2014 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1745017901410010087


Aims were to review results of the five psychiatric studies on Flexible Assertive Community Treatment (FACT) published during 2007-2013, and to compare FACT with Resource-group Assertive Community Treatment (RACT) which specifically focuses on empowerment and rehabilitation of clients in the stable phase. During 2007 articles appeared in scientific journals arguing in favor of the need for the development of the treatment method Assertive Community Treatment (ACT). A particularly notable article was one that featured a Dutch version of ACT, namely FACT. The initiative received great sympathy given that clinical practice and research showed that both American and British versions of ACT were in need of new impulses to be able to maintain an optimal level of care. Seven years have passed since the Dutch model was international presented and five empirical studies about FACT have been published and therefore a first critical examination of FACT was conducted. The review indicated that the five empirical studies failed to show that FACT involves improvement of the clients in terms of symptoms, functioning, or well-being. The conclusions were that at present there is no evidence for FACT and that RACT with its small, flexible ACT teams, where the client him/herself is included and decides on the treatment goals, might be able to provide new impulses and a new vitality to the treatment mode of an assertive community treatment.

Keywords: Assertive community treatment, assertive outreach, FACT, optimal treatment, RACT, resource group..
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