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An exploration of support workers’ views on working in a community mental health, supported-living service: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis.

Yeomans, James Thomas (2018) An exploration of support workers’ views on working in a community mental health, supported-living service: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. UNSPECIFIED. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Over the last three decades, evidence of mental health professionals’ negative views towards the diagnosis of borderline personality disorder has been well documented within the literature. However, research on the social care profession is limited, therefore, this study explored the views of support workers who work with service users with this diagnosis. Five semi-structured interviews were conducted, and an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis was used to analyse the data. Three Superordinate themes emerged from the analysis: Support Worker as ‘Mother’; Service User as ‘Other’; and ‘Sad beneath the Bad’. Findings illustrate that working with service users with this diagnosis in a social care context and setting is both rewarding and challenging. Support workers report positive perceptions and experiences towards service users; contrary to the nursing literature. Where negative perceptions were expressed, efforts were made to understand the situation holistically. Implications and future research directions are discussed.

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