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Borderline Personality Disorder Resource Center Hits the Ground Running in Providing Information on Illness Affecting 10 Million Americans.

Lifestyle Editors/City/Metro Editors/Health/Medical Writers

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 20, 2004

White Plains-Based Center Now Averaging 100 Calls Per Month to

Help Patients, Parents and Health Care Professionals Deal with

Borderline Personality Disorder

Any doubts about the need for information on Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) can be quickly dispelled by responses to the recently established BPD Resource Center at Payne Whitney Westchester, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital in White Plains.

Opened in February, 2004 as the only hospital-affiliated national BPD resource center for information, education, referrals and support, the center is already fielding up to 100 calls per month. It also is becoming a popular destination point for the latest research and data on the disorder.

BPD affects roughly 10 million Americans, more than 75% of whom are women. 10% of all mental health outpatients and 20% of inpatients are thought to have the disorder, which is characterized by extreme mood swings, impulsive behavior, self-injuring acts and suicide ideation as some of its many symptoms.

According to Eliza Whoriskey, M.A., Administrative Manager of the Resource Center, typical questions asked by callers include:

-- What are the symptoms of BPD?

-- Where can I have my child diagnosed?

-- Where can I turn for treatment?

-- What are the treatment alternatives?

-- Where can I find other families coping with similar issues?

-- What questions should I be asking of doctors and mental health

professionals?

-- What should I, as a general practitioner, know about BPD - and

to whom should I refer patients?

"Despite the prevalence of BPD throughout the country, there is much confusion about the disorder. It commonly occurs with one or several other disorders and its specific causes are still unknown," Whoriskey says. "As a consequence, people can go years without being properly diagnosed - and years after that before they find appropriate treatment. The availability of information will cut through the uncertainty and provide better outcomes."

"It is vitally important that information become readily available because there are sufficient grounds for optimism today. Treatments are producing positive results, support networks are being established and more attention is being given to the disorder both at academic and research institutions," adds Perry D. Hoffman, Ph.D., family liaison at the BPD Resource Center and President, National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality Disorder. "We don't have all the answers yet, but we can eliminate a lot of the pain and frustration that accompany coping with BPD."

According to Whoriskey, approximately 60 percent of the queries received thus far have come from people with BPD, while 30 percent are from families and 10 percent are asked by mental health professionals. Most callers are in the New York metropolitan area, she adds, but as more information is collected about treatment centers elsewhere, the BPD Resource Center will become a major informational resource for people throughout the country.

The Center, which was made possible through funding from generous hospital benefactors, has three primary missions:

-- inform the public about BPD and provide assistance in locating

treatment facilities

-- collect and disseminate the most current information on the

disorder

-- provide information to mental health practitioners and other

professionals working with patients and families struggling

with BPD.

Its Clinical Director is Otto Kernberg, M.D., Director of NewYork-Presbyterian's Personality Disorders Institute and one of the leading figures worldwide in understanding and diagnosing BPD.

The Borderline Personality Disorder Resource Center is the country's only hospital-affiliated, national BPD resource center for information, education, support and referrals for treatment. Its office and library, which contains numerous books, articles and research papers, and data on treatment facilities, are open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on the campus of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Westchester Division, at 21 Bloomingdale Road in White Plains, N.Y. For information, please call the Resource Center's toll-free number, 1-888-694-2273, or visit its website at www.bpdresourcecenter.org.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital was formed in 1997 through the merger of two nationally recognized hospitals - New York Hospital and Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital. The hospital's Westchester Division, opened in 1894, is one of the world's most advanced centers for psychiatric care. The Westchester Division serves children, adolescents, adults and the elderly with comprehensive outpatient, day treatment, partial hospitalization and inpatient services. In addition to clinical treatment, the Westchester Division is also a center for interdisciplinary medical research and education.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:May 20, 2004
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