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Exploring cross-boundary collaborationfor youth mental health in Sweden: a qualitative study using the integrativeframework for collaborative governance
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5517-0803
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5011-2233
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Nursing.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Section of Physiotherapy.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6636-9597
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2024 (English)In: BMC Health Services Research, E-ISSN 1472-6963, Vol. 24, article id 322Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Youth mental health is a major health concern in almost every country. Mental health accounts for about 13% of the global burden of disease in the 10-to-19-year age group. Still there are significant gaps between the mental health needs of young people and the quality and accessibility of available services. Collaboration between health and social service actors is a recognized way of reducing gaps in quality and access. Yet there is little scientific evidence on how these collaborations are applied, or on the challenges of cross-boundary collaboration in the youth mental health space. This study aims to explore how collaboration is understood and practiced by professionals working in the Swedish youth mental health system.

Methods: We conducted 42 interviews (November 2020 to March 2022) with health and social care professionalsand managers in the youth mental health system in Sweden. Interviews explored participants’ experience andunderstanding of the purpose, realization, and challenges of collaboration. Data were analysed under an emergentstudy design using reflexive thematic analysis.

Results: The analysis produced three themes. The first shows that collaboration is considered as essential andimportant, and that it serves diverse purposes and holds multiple meanings in relation to professionals’ roles andresponsibilities. The second addresses the different layers of collaboration, in relation to activities, relationships, andtarget levels, and the third captures the challenges and criticisms in collaborating across the youth mental healthlandscape, but also in growing possibilities for future development.

Conclusion: We conclude that collaboration serves multiple purposes and takes many shapes in the Swedish youth mental health system. Despite the many challenges, participants saw potential in further building collaboration. Interestingly our participants also raised concerns about too much collaboration. There was scepticism about collaboration directing attention away from young people to the professionals, thereby risking the trust and confidentiality of their young clients. Collaboration is not a panacea and will not compensate for an under-resourced youth mental health system.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central (BMC), 2024. Vol. 24, article id 322
Keywords [en]
Youth mental health, Youth mental health services, Mental health system, Collaboratio, Governance
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy
Research subject
Public health; Public health
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-221945DOI: 10.1186/s12913-024-10757-yPubMedID: 38468279Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85187412932OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-221945DiVA, id: diva2:1843686
Part of project
How can mental health care services be integrated in youth clinics? A health policy and systems study, Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2018-00364Available from: 2024-03-11 Created: 2024-03-11 Last updated: 2024-04-22Bibliographically approved

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Richter Sundberg, LindaGotfredsen, AnneChristianson, MonicaWiklund, MariaHurtig, Anna-KarinGoicolea, Isabel

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Richter Sundberg, LindaGotfredsen, AnneChristianson, MonicaWiklund, MariaHurtig, Anna-KarinGoicolea, Isabel
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Medical and Health SciencesHealth Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy

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