Skip to main content Accessibility help

Training Community Psychiatric Nurses for Psychosocial Intervention: Report of a Pilot Study

  • Charles Brooker (a1), Nicholas Tarrier (a2), Christine Barrowclough (a3), Anthony Butterworth (a1) and David Goldberg (a4)...


Community psychiatric nurses were trained to deliver psychosocial intervention to clients with a diagnosis of schizophrenia living at home with relatives. The training package consisted of family assessment, health education, and family stress management strategies. In a ‘quasi-experimental’ design, a sample of families (n = 54) were recruited to either a control or experimental condition and followed up for 12 months. A number of favourable outcomes were observed in the experimental group, including improvements in the client's target symptoms, personal functioning, and social adjustment. Relatives' satisfaction with services increased and reports of their own minor psychiatric morbidity improved.


Corresponding author



Hide All
Atkinson, J. (1989) To tell or not to tell the diagnosis of schizophrenia. British Journal of Medical Ethics, 15, 2124.
Barrowclough, C. & Tarrier, N. (1984) Psychosocial interventions with families and their effects on the course of schizophrenia. Psychological Medicine, 146, 629642.
Barrowclough, C. & Tarrier, N. (1987) A behavioural family intervention with a schizophrenic patient: a case study. Behavioural Psychotherapy, 15, 252272.
Birchwood, M. (1983) Family Coping Behaviour and the Course of Schizophrenia. Unpublished PhD Thesis: University of Birmingham.
Brooker, C. (1985) The National Survey of Community Psychiatric Nursing Services. Leeds: Community Psychiatric Nursing Association Publications.
Brooker, C. (1987) An investigation into the factors influencing variation in the growth of community psychiatric nursing services. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 12, 367375.
Brooker, C. (1990a) Expressed emotion and psychosocial intervention: a review. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 27, 267275.
Brooker, C. (1990b) The application of the concept of expressed emotion to the role of the community psychiatric nurse. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 27, 276285.
Brooker, C. & Butterworth, C. (1991) Training community psychiatric nurses to undertake psychosocial intervention: changes in role. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 28, 189200.
Burns, T. (1990) Community ward rounds. Health Trends, 2, 6263.
Campbell, D. & Stanley, J. (1963) Experimental and quasi-experimental designs for research on teaching. In The Handbook of Research in Teaching (ed. Gage, N.). Chicago: Rand-McNally.
Cohen, C. & Sokolovsky, J. (1978) Schizophrenia and social networks: ex-patients in the inner city. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 4, 546560.
Creer, C. & Wing, J. (1975) Living with a schizophrenic patient. British Journal of Hospital Medicine, 14, 73.
Department of Health (1990) The Care Programme Approach for People with a Mental Illness Referred to the Specialist Psychiatric Services, HC(90)23/LASSL/(90)11. London: DoH.
Donlon, P., Rada, R. & Arora, K. (1976) Depression and the reintegration phase of schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 133, 12651268.
Falloon, I., Boyd, J. & McGill, C. (1984) The Family Care of Schizophrenia. New York: Guilford Press.
Falloon, I., Boyd, J., McGill, C. et al (1985) Family management in the prevention of morbidity of schizophrenia. Archives of General Psychiatry, 42, 887896.
Falloon, I. & Shanahan, W. (1990) Community management of schizophrenia. British Journal of Hospital Medicine, 43, 6266.
Gibbons, J., Horn, S., Powell, J., et al (1984) Schizophrenic patients and their families: a survey in a psychiatric service based on a DGH unit. British Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 7077.
Goldberg, D. (1985) Implementation of mental health policies in the north west of England. In The Provision of Mental Health Services in Britain: The Way Ahead (eds Wilkinson, G. & Freeman, H.). London: Gaskell Press.
Goldberg, D. & Hillier, V. (1978) A scaled version of the general health questionnaire. Psychological Medicine, 9, 139146.
Hatfield, A. (1979) Help-seeking behaviour in families of schizophrenics. American Journal of Community Psychiatry, 7, 563569.
Hogarty, G. (1984) Depot neuroleptics. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 45, 3642.
Hogarty, G., Anderson, C., Reiss, D., et al (1986) Family psychoeducation, social skills training and maintenance chemotherapy in the aftercare treatment of schizophrenia. Archives of General Psychiatry, 43, 633642.
Holden, D. & Lewine, R. (1982) How families evaluate mental health professionals, resources and effects of illness. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 8, 626633.
Hunter, P. (1978) Schizophrenia and Community Psychiatric Nursing. Kingston-Upon-Thames: National Schizophrenia Fellowship.
Krawiecka, M., Goldberg, D. & Vaughan, M. (1977) A standardised psychiatric assessment scale for chronic psychotic patients. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 55, 299308.
Kulhara, P., Avasthi, A., Chadda, R., et al (1989) Negative and depressive symptoms in schizophrenia. British Journal of Psychiatry, 154, 207211.
Lazarus, R. (1966) Psychosocial Stress and the Coping Process. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Lebow, J. (1982) Consumer satisfaction with mental health treatment. Psychological Bulletin, 91, 244259.
Left, J., Kuipers, L., Berkowitz, R., et al (1982) A controlled trial of social intervention in the families of schizophrenic patients. British Journal of Psychiatry, 141, 121134.
National Schizophrenia Fellowship (1990) Provision of Community Services for Mentally Ill People and their Carers. Kingston-Upon-Thames: National Schizophrenia Fellowship.
Parker, G., Johnston, P. & Hayward, L. (1988) Parental “expressed emotion” as a predictor of schizophrenic relapse. Archives of General Psychiatry, 45, 806813.
Sandford, J. (1976) Schizophrenia – an end to relapse. Nursing Times, 18 March, 418420.
Scott, E., Sharma, S. & Temple, K. (1977) Care of the schizophrenic patient. Nursing Times, 19 May, 740741.
Scottish Schizophrenia Research Group (1985) First episode schizophrenia IV. Psychiatric and social impact on the family. British Journal of Psychiatry, 150, 340345.
Simmons, S. & Brooker, C. (1986) Community Psychiatric Nursing: A Social Perspective. London: Heinemann.
Sladden, S. (1979) Psychiatric Nursing in the Community: A Study of a Working Situation. Edinburgh: Churchill-Livingstone.
Smith, J. & Birchwood, M. (1990) Relatives and patients as partners in the management of schizophrenia: the development of a service model. British Journal of Psychiatry, 156, 654660.
Spaniol, L., Zipple, A. & Fitzgerald, S. (1984) How professionals can share power with families: a practical approach to working with families of the mentally ill. Psychosocial Rehabilitation Journal, 8, 7784.
Spaniol, L., Jung, H., Zipple, A., et al (1987) Families as a resource in the rehabilitation of the severely psychiatrically disabled. In Families of the Mentally Ill (eds Hatfield, A. & Leffley, H.). London: Cassell Educational.
Stirling, J., Tantam, D., Thomas, P., et al (1991) Expressed emotion and early onset schizophrenia: a one year follow up. Psychological Medicine, 21, 675685.
Strachan, A. (1986) Family intervention for the rehabilitation of schizophrenia: towards protection and coping. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 12, 678698.
Suy, E., Woestenborghs, R. & Heykants, J. (1982) Bioavailability and clinical effects of two different concentrations of haloperidol decanoate. Current Therapeutic Research, 31, 982991.
Tarrier, N. & Barrowclough, C. (1986) Providing information to relatives about schizophrenia: some comments. British Journal of Psychiatry, 149, 458463.
Tarrier, N. & Barrowclough, C., Vaughn, C., et al (1988) The community management of schizophrenia: a controlled trial of a behavioural intervention with families to reduce relapse. British Journal of Psychiatry, 153, 532542.
Tyrer, P., Hawksworth, J., Hobbs, R., et al (1990) The role of the community psychiatric nurse. British Journal of Hospital Medicine, 43, 439442.
Vaughn, C. (1989) Annotation: expressed emotion in family relationships. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 30, 1322.
Vaughn, C. & Leff, J. (1976) The influence of family and social factors on the course of psychiatric illness. British Journal of Psychiatry, 129, 125137.
White, E. (1990) The Third National Quinquennial Survey of Community Psychiatric Nursing Services. Leeds: CPNA Publications.
Wooff, K., Goldberg, D. & Fryers, T. (1988) The practice of community psychiatric nursing and mental health social work in Sal ford. British Journal of Psychiatry, 152, 783792.


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed

Training Community Psychiatric Nurses for Psychosocial Intervention: Report of a Pilot Study

  • Charles Brooker (a1), Nicholas Tarrier (a2), Christine Barrowclough (a3), Anthony Butterworth (a1) and David Goldberg (a4)...
Submit a response


No eLetters have been published for this article.


Reply to: Submit a response

Your details

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *