Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Mental health personnel-Attitudes, Borderline personality disorder-Patients, Stigma (Social psychology), Self-efficacy, Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital, Perceptions, Attitudes, Borderline personality disorder, Efficacy, Blame, Stigma, VA


The objective of this study is to gather information from mental health professionals at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, Massachusetts about how they perceive patients with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). By building on research that has already been conducted, the purpose of this study is to understand if individuals with BPD are stigmatized against by medical professionals. The primary question is whether or not BPD is thought to be synonymous with "difficult" or "hard to treat," leading to less effective treatment. This research will be conducted through an anonymous survey that will be emailed to members of the clinical team at the ENRM Bedford VA. A correlational design will be used to analyze the perceptions that treating professionals have about individuals with BPD. This design will examine 3 variables; treating professional's attitudes, sense of blame and efficacy. Quantitative data will be collected from treating professionals through a questionnaire that presents a series of vignettes. Through analyzing the correlations between treating professional_СЄs characteristics and their perceptions and clients with BPD, this study could strengthen theoretical concepts of labeling theory, attitudes and efficacy. Treating professionals will be defined as professionals in mental health service (nurses, social workers, psychiatrists and psychologists) in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Operational definition for BPD will stand as defined by the DSM-IV. This study will hopefully attain a well rounded sample of treating professionals that can be generalized to other arenas of human services fields. The VA is a good outlet to survey clinicians in an effort to improve quality of care provided to veterans because findings could be applied to other VA agencies. The anticipated findings could reveal significant implications for social work practice. For example, the study could indicate if there is a need for more education about individuals with BPD and what type of treatment is most successful.




iv,54 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)-Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2011. Includes bibliographical references (p. 42-43)