About the manual
Supporting a family member with schizophrenia: Practical strategies for daily living is designed to guide family members and other caregivers in supporting their loved ones with schizophrenia through cognitive adaptation training (CAT) strategies.
The guide grew out of the pioneering work of Dawn Velligan and Natalie Maples in San Antonio, Texas. They developed an intervention—called Cognitive Adaptation Training, or CAT for short—and proved that it worked in an area seldom addressed well in clinical services: the major tasks involved in a person with schizophrenia having an independent and fulfilling life in the community.
Over the course of my collaboration with Dawn and Natalie, we studied modified versions of CAT, and I spoke about these approaches with many people—individually and through presentations at various meetings.
Meetings with family members were particularly striking. In them, families expressed a keen interest in the types of pragmatic, in-home support strategies that CAT offers and I received many requests to make them more available. The manual is the response.
While written by professionals, it is the product of dozens of conversations with people with mental illness such a schizophrenia, their families, clinician and other supports.