Borderline personality disorder: foundation training for public mental health clinicians

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To describe the development and delivery of a brief training workshop on borderline personality disorder for public mental health clinicians.


During the initial phase the author had contact with key informants, undertook a North American study tour and completed a course in adult teaching. A two-day workshop was developed and delivered to one public mental health service and private workshops were run in three cities. This led to requests to run workshops in other public mental health services. Independent qualitative research of workshop participants provided feedback assisting the evolution of the workshop, as did ongoing participant feedback.


One hundred and three workshops were delivered to 2048 participants in Australia and New Zealand between 1997 and 2000. Participants rated the workshop positively with 99.7% stating they would recommend the workshop to others.


The numerous workshop requests, good attendance and participant endorsement indicated a desire and readiness of general public mental health clinicians for the training being offered. Substantial training has been available for psychotherapists working in this area but little or nothing for general public mental health clinicians. This workshop provides an addition to training options available in the public sector.

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