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Vocational Rehabilitation for Persons With Schizophrenia: Recent Research and Implications for Practice

Judith Cook, Ph.D., Lisa Razzano, Ph.D.


This article presents research-based principles of vocational rehabilitation that have emerged from the study of diagnostically heterogeneous populations of persons with severe mental illness. Employment and vocational functioning outcomes of people with schizophrenia from recently published followup studies are described. In addition, we present research conducted over the past decade concerning differential outcomes of vocational rehabilitation services for people with schizophrenia versus other psychotic and nonpsychotic disorders. We then explore studies of people with schizophrenia that may illuminate the links between specific features of this disorder—including symptomatology, social skills, and neuropsychological impairments—and poorer vocational outcome. We conclude with a set of recommendations for clinical practice that draw upon the most recent discoveries and insights in this field.


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