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Sharing Research on the Effectiveness of Peer Respites


HSRI Research Associate Bevin Croft is one of the presenters featured in “Peer-run Respites: Effective Alternatives to Hospitals," a webinar presented by the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery. You can watch the recorded version here: Leaders of peer respites from around the country describe their programs, and Bevin shares some of the latest research on the effectiveness of these models.

A team at HSRI conducted an evaluation of a peer respite in Santa Cruz, California. Their research showed that, compared with similar residents in the community who were using mental health services, peer respite guests were 70% less likely to use inpatient or emergency services. They also found that respite days were associated with significantly fewer inpatient and emergency service hours.

What are peer respites? Staffed by people with their own lived experience of the mental health system, peer respites offer short-term stays in a safe, supportive, homelike-environment for people who’ve self-identified as being in crisis. The premise is that human connection, support, and empowering practices help people recover—and that by avoiding trauma associated with hospitalization and coercive care, recovery can be more effective and lasting. 

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