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Name: Psychiatric Nurse
Description: The art of using one’s self in therapeutic ways to assist patients to affect changes in self-understanding and behavior. Views individuals from a holistic perspective, taking into account both physical and mental health needs while focusing on human behavior
Client age group: Children, adolescents, and adults
Diagnoses: Acute and chronic mental illnesses including psychoses, personality and mood disorders, neuroses, physical abuse and sexual assault with/without substance abuse and/or medical-surgical problems
Practice roles: Staff nurse, counselor, therapist, clinical nurse specialist, case manager, head nurse, supervisor
Characteristics: Patient care and relationships; autonomy, independence, and teamwork with peers
Drawbacks: Uncooperative or difficult/dangerous clients, excessive paperwork, restrictive patient-care policies, bureaucratic demands, stress and conflict from misconceptions about mental illness
Desirable skills: People skills including self-understanding and communication, medical-surgical skills, psychological and physical stamina
Education: RN with AD, Diploma, or BSN (preferred)
Employers: Hospitals, outpatient facilities, health departments, long-term care centers
Certification:
American Nurses Credentialling Center
600 Maryland Av., SW, #100
Washington, DC 20024-2571
800-284-CERT
Associations:
American Psychiatric Nurses Association
2107 Wilson Blvd, #300-A
Arlington, VA 22201
703-243-2443
 
Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing
1211 Locust St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
800-826-2950
Publications:
Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association
 
APNA News
202-857-1133
 
Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
800-826-2950
 
Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services
609-808-1000