Rethinking outcomes in self-harm research

The effectiveness of an intervention is typically determined by the use of outcome measures, whether this be in research or in clinical practice. In research, outcomes allow for the determination of an intervention’s suitability for wider distribution into communities. In clinical practice, outcomes can contribute to practitioners’ understanding of service users’ wellbeing and whether it has improved or if extra support is required. Clearly, outcome measures can carry a lot of weight, so it is important that the target constructs are meaningful and relevant so that they accurately reflect the experience of ‘recovery’ for each individual.