Some 80% of psychiatric nurses believe that people with borderline personality disorder (BPD) receive inadequate care, a survey shows.
A study of 157 ward and community based nurses working for a health service providing mental health care found that 98% of nurses said service shortages contributed to inadequate care.
More than a quarter of nurses surveyed had daily contact with patients with BPD but only 3% had any postgraduate BPD training.
The survey also found that disagreements between staff on how to care for patients with BPD was also thought to contribute to inadequate care.
Study author Seamus Cowman said: "The majority of nurses strongly agreed that they had a key role to play in the assessment and management of people with BPD and 90% said they would be keen to receive further training in dealing with BPD.
"This lack of training needs to be addressed as other studies have shown that it can improve both knowledge of BPD and attitudes towards it."
Asking how services could be improved, 65% of nurses said providing more specialist services, 60% said establishing standard protocols for managing people with BPD and 51% said skills training workshops for staff.
Professor Cowman added: "We hope that this research will help to drive service improvements for people with BPD and provide staff with the education and guidance they need to make best use of their skills."
"Certainly the propensity for borderlines to split staff might account for the wide disagreement among staff on how to deal with such patients on a unit? These persons are incredibly skillful at presenting different personas to different people" - Name and address supplied