How Effective are Current Joint Working Practices between Children and Family Social Workers and Mental Health Care Coordinators, in Supporting Families in which there is a Primary Caregiver, with a Diagnosis of Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder?

Lauren Martins*, Laura Tucker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder is a complex and often stigmatising diagnosis. Although falling under the remit of mental health services, it is not always seen as a mental health need and research suggests that, if parents or carers are not provided with more holistic support, parental mental health will deteriorate with children likely to have poorer outcomes, placing them at an increased risk of harm. This likelihood of harm increases with compounding factors such as substance misuse and domestic abuse. One organisation alone cannot effectively address the complex difficulties that people with this diagnosis may experience, thus interagency working is necessary. This paper explores the barriers and facilitators to interagency working to support parental caregivers with a diagnosis of Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder between Children’s Social Care and a Community Mental Health Team within the same English area. Five mental health care coordinators and two children and families social workers who had experience working with this client group were interviewed. Participants identified challenges and benefits to working with their partner agency around communication, knowledge, stigmatisation and resources. The research provides suggestions to develop current interagency working relationships and to enhance care and support available to people experiencing the diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberbcac238
JournalBritish Journal of Social Work
Early online date9 Jan 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details

Cite this