Critics have claimed that recovery advocacy, recovery management, recovery-oriented systems of care, and related ideas and initiatives are a “flavor of the month” fad and that the so-called “recovery revolution” is nothing more than new words for what the addictions field has been doing for decades. Such shallow criticism ignores fundamental changes that are unfolding that will profoundly influence the future of addiction recovery—and the future of addiction treatment as a social institution. I recently posted an outline detailing these changes in ten critical areas:
1) International growth and diversification of secular, spiritual, and religious recovery mutual aid organizations,
2) Exponential growth of virtual recovery communities and online recovery support resources,
3) Birth and maturation of a new recovery advocacy movement,
4) Emergence of an ecumenical (beyond identification with a particular mutual aid society or treatment institution) culture of recovery,
5) Rise of new recovery support institutions,
6) New recovery support roles/services as adjuncts or alternatives to addiction treatment,
7) Extension of acute care models of addiction treatment to models of sustained recovery management nested within larger recovery-oriented systems of care that extend support across the stages of personal/family recovery,
8) Cross-fertilization (silo transcendence) of prevention, harm reduction, early intervention, treatment, and recovery support services,
9) Recovery-focused research, and the
10) Emergence of recovery as an alternative organizing paradigm for drug policy.
A recently posted paper details changes within these ten arenas that collectively represent not a tweaking of our traditional responses to alcohol and other drug problems but a foundational shift in how such problems are perceived and addressed at personal, community, and cultural levels. Those wishing to explore these areas in greater depth can click HERE.