MORS Scale

Discover the MORS Scale—a tool for mental health professionals to assess and track recovery in severe mental illness. Download our free template!

By Russell Tan on Jul 15, 2024.


Fact Checked by Ericka Pingol.

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What is the Milestones of Recovery Scale (MORS)?

The Milestones of Recovery Scale (MORS) is a tool used in the mental health field to assess the progress and recovery journey of individuals with severe mental illness. The MORS is designed to be simple yet effective in evaluating a person's recovery journey. It provides mental health professionals with a standardized method to measure recovery stages, helping tailor interventions and supports to the individual's needs.

The MORS identifies recovery along a continuum from severe impairment to full recovery, considering factors such as risk, engagement, and skills acquisition. It emphasizes a strength-based approach, focusing on the individual's capabilities and potential for improvement rather than just their deficits. This tool also helps clinicians and addiction professionals celebrate recovery milestones by providing a clear framework for evaluating progress.

How is it scored?

The MORS consists of a scale with eight distinct levels, each representing a different stage of recovery:

  1. Extreme risk
  2. High risk/Not engaged
  3. High risk/Engaged
  4. Poorly coping/Not engaged
  5. Poorly coping/Engaged
  6. Coping/Rehabilitating
  7. Early recovery
  8. Advanced recovery

Scoring is based on the clinician's assessment of the individual's current state, considering their risk of harm, level of engagement with services, and ability to manage daily living activities. The scale is typically completed during regular client assessments and involves a combination of clinical observation, self-reporting by the client, and input from other care providers.

The scale helps track addiction recovery milestones, guiding treatment programs tailored to individual needs. Using the MORS, clinicians can identify significant milestones in a patient's treatment journey.

Next steps after using this scale

After scoring an individual on the MORS, the next steps involve using the results to inform treatment planning and service delivery. This might include:

Step 1: Personalized care plans

Develop or adjust care plans based on the individual's specific stage of recovery, focusing on enhancing strengths and addressing areas of need.

Step 2: Targeted interventions

Implement interventions that are appropriate for the individual's recovery stage and integral to comprehensive treatment programs. For example, someone at a higher risk level might need more intensive support, while someone in early recovery might benefit from skill-building activities.

Step 3: Monitoring progress

Monitoring progress is crucial as it helps clients build a new life by moving away from their past habits. It is also crucial for those aiming to stay sober by providing regular feedback and support.

Step 4: Collaborative care

Engage the individual in their recovery process, encouraging active participation in setting goals and making decisions about their treatment. This step encourages clients to set personal goals that align with their recovery needs. Engaging with clients in person is also essential for effective recovery management.

Step 5: Resource allocation

Ensure that resources are appropriately allocated to meet the needs of individuals at different stages of recovery, enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of mental health services. Recovery is a lifelong journey, and MORS provides the necessary tools to navigate this process.

How to use our MORS Scale template

Using the MORS Scale template is straightforward and designed to help mental health professionals efficiently assess and monitor the recovery of individuals with severe mental illnesses or substance use disorders. Here’s how you can utilize the template:

Step 1: Download the template

Access and download the free PDF version of the MORS Scale template from our website.

Step 2: Familiarize with the scale

Review the eight levels of recovery outlined in the template, ranging from 'Extreme risk' to 'Advanced recovery.' Understand the criteria for each level to evaluate the client's current state accurately.

Step 3: Gather client information

Collect your client's comprehensive background information and current status through interviews, previous medical records, and consultation with other care providers if available.

Step 4: Assess the client

Using the template, assess the client during a session. This can be done through direct observation, client self-report, and input from other team members involved in the client’s care.

Step 5: Score the client

Mark the appropriate level on the template based on your assessment. This helps identify the client’s current position on the recovery continuum.

Step 6: Plan for care

Utilize the assessment results to develop or modify the client’s treatment plan. Tailor interventions and supports to suit their specific needs at their current recovery stage.

Benefits of using the MORS Scale

The MORS offers several benefits for both mental health professionals and individuals undergoing treatment for severe mental illness. One of these benefits is helping boost self-esteem by acknowledging each milestone in the recovery process. Other benefits include:

  • Standardized assessment: Provides a consistent method for evaluating recovery, ensuring that all clients are assessed using the same criteria.
  • Individualized care: Facilitates the development of personalized care plans tailored to each individual's specific needs and recovery stage.
  • Strength-based approach: This scale focuses on the individual's strengths and potential for improvement, promoting a more positive and empowering view of recovery.
  • Enhanced communication: This scale improves communication among mental health professionals, clients, and their support networks by providing a clear framework for discussing recovery progress.
  • Resource allocation: Helps allocate resources more effectively by identifying individuals' specific needs, ensuring that those who require more intensive support receive it.
  • Progress tracking: Enables regular monitoring of an individual's recovery journey, allowing for timely adjustments to treatment plans as needed.
  • Goal setting: This scale encourages clients to actively participate in setting and achieving their recovery goals, fostering a sense of ownership and motivation.
  • Evidence-based practice: Supports the use of evidence-based interventions by providing measurable outcomes that can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of different treatment approaches.
  • Improved outcomes: Ultimately contributes to better recovery outcomes by ensuring that interventions are appropriately matched to the individual's stage of recovery and specific needs.
Who can use the MORS Scale?
Who can use the MORS Scale?

Commonly asked questions

Who can use the MORS Scale?

The MORS is designed for use by mental health professionals, including clinicians, counselors, and social workers, to assess and monitor the recovery of individuals with severe mental illness. It is especially useful for addiction professionals working with clients with substance use disorders.

How often should the MORS Scale be administered?

This should be administered regularly during client assessments, typically every few months, to track progress and adjust care plans as needed.

Can the MORS Scale be used for all mental health conditions?

While the scale is particularly useful for severe mental illnesses, it can be adapted for use with a wide range of mental health conditions to help evaluate recovery and inform treatment.

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