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Across the Divide: Using Research to Enhance Collaboration Between Mental Health and Domestic Violence Services

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Recognition of the deleterious effects of domestic violence on women's mental health has highlighted the potential benefits for women of collaboration between mental health and domestic violence services. Yet the different histories, knowledge bases, and organisational cultures of the mental health and domestic violence sectors present formidable challenges to the development of effective collaborative work. This article draws on a large research enquiry, involving four separate but related studies, which explored aspects of collaboration between these two service sectors. It focuses particularly on data collected in interviews with practitioners from mental health and domestic violence services who were participants in an action research study (one of the four studies), which was aimed at discovering the factors that contributed to enhanced collaboration and the benefits of this for women who experience both domestic violence and mental health issues.
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Keywords: Collaboration; Domestic Violence; Mental Health; Practice Research; Social Work Research; Women

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Publication date: March 1, 2012

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