Rehabilitation is a subject of topical interest in psychiatry and the Royal College of Psychiatrists has laid down guidelines of practice in its publication Psychiatric Rehabilitation in the 1980s. More detailed advice is given in Wing and Morris's (1981) practical manual for people involved in this work. Morgan and Cheadle (1981) make the point that consultants appointed to posts with a special interest in and responsibility for rehabilitation often have no special knowledge of or experience in the field and have to learn as they go along. This was the case with me when I took up my post in March 1978. Having learnt something from colleagues, from my reading and from my own experience, I thought that I needed to look elsewhere and see at first hand what experts in the sphere were doing. I was granted six weeks' study leave in the Spring of 1981 and arranged to spend five weeks at the Maudsley Hospital and a week at Southampton. I also visited Montrose for the Scottish Division's meeting on rehabilitation.
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