Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name



School of Social Work

First Advisor

Dr. Richard Lyle


The purpose of this study was to analyze and explain the relationship between decompensation factors and alternative care structures for mentally ill clients in metropolitan Atlanta since the deinstitutionalization movement. Selected facets of decompensation and alternative care structures were analyzed to explain the impact of the independent variables on the dependent variables and to determine which of these facets are predictors of functioning and/or improved quality of life for mentally ill clients. Survey research was utilized involving a randomly selected sample of 100 mentally ill clients who were either active participants of Community Friendship Incorporated (CFI) or residents of one of the supportive/transitional housing programs affiliated with Community Friendship Incorporated. The independent variables for the study are age group, gender, ethnicity, education, employment and marital status. The questionnaire will employ two instruments. The Behavior and Symptom Identification Scale (BASIS-32) allows for the documentation of self-reported functioning and symptomalogy in addition to the Alternative Care Structure Survey (ACSS) which permits self-reported documentation of usage of various program components of alternative care settings. The decompensation factors of relation to self/others, daily living skills/role functioning, depression/anxiety, impulsive/addictive behavior and psychosis; and the usage of program components of alternative care structures will be codified, measured and analyzed.