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Ameliorating Patient Stigma Amongst Staff Working With Personality Disorder: Randomized Controlled Trial of Self-Management Versus Skills Training

  • Sue Clarke (a1), Georgina Taylor (a2), Helen Bolderston (a2), Joanna Lancaster (a3) and Bob Remington (a2)...


Background: Patients diagnosed with a personality disorder (PD) are often stigmatized by the healthcare staff who treat them. Aims: This study aimed to compare the impact on front-line staff of a self-management Acceptance and Commitment Therapy-based training intervention (ACTr) with a knowledge- and skills-based Dialectical Behaviour Training intervention (DBTr). Method: A service-based randomized controlled trial was conducted comparing the effects of 2-day ACTr (N = 53) and DBTr (N = 47) staff workshops over 6 months. Primary outcome measures were staff attitudes towards patients and staff-patient relationships. Results: For both interventions, staff attitudes, therapeutic relationship, and social distancing all improved pre- to postintervention, and these changes were maintained at 6-month follow-up. Conclusions: Although offering different resources to staff, both ACTr and DBTr were associated with an improved disposition towards PD patients. Future research could evaluate a combined approach, both for staff working with PD patients and those working with other stigmatized groups.


Corresponding author

Reprint requests to Sue Clarke, University Department of Mental Health, St Ann's Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Poole BH13 7LN, UK. E-mail:


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Ameliorating Patient Stigma Amongst Staff Working With Personality Disorder: Randomized Controlled Trial of Self-Management Versus Skills Training

  • Sue Clarke (a1), Georgina Taylor (a2), Helen Bolderston (a2), Joanna Lancaster (a3) and Bob Remington (a2)...
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