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Basic Philosophy of the Therapeutic Community

1. Social structures ? communities ? themselves have the power to positively change behaviour, feelings and thinking.
2. Social norms have the potential power to change behaviour for the better.
3. Even patients who have mental handicaps possess at the same time many abilities that they don’t know about.
4. Patients, like the staff, are able to provide support.
5. Patients, like the staff, are able to take on responsibility.
6. Honest and open interactions among people are essential to make a community therapeutic. It is for this reason that in this hospital many meetings are necessary.
7. There is a direct causal relationship between defective human relations among staff and the patient’s pathological object relations.
8. The role of the staff is to allow patients to grow and develop, to learn from life experiences within the community and gain courage to develop.
9. The exchange of information among the various specialties is extremely important for therapy. Important decisions concerning patients’ therapy are best when made at team level.
10. The team is not introducing democracy in decision-making, but seeks to inspire anyone, patients and staff, to exchange their own opinions.
11. At the same time as the therapeutic community is a mode of therapy, it is also a community for everyday life. As with most modes of therapy, the ultimate goal is to be therapeutic. Also, as do most communities, it is perpetually changing. In other words, it reflects the way of life, behaviour, values and essence of the human beings that reside therein. In this way, what a therapeutic community is, is a process of development towards a goal that even as it gets closer is never reached.