MSN: Psychiatric & Mental Health Degree Programs & Career
Psychiatric-mental health nurses (PMHNs) treat patients of all ages with mood and personality disorders, which can include bipolar disorder, dementia, depression, and schizophrenia, to name a few examples. More so than most other types of nursing, psychiatric-mental health nursing requires the development of a therapeutic relationship between the caregiver and patient. Psychiatric and mental health nurses have expertise in being able to empathize, provide support, and demonstrate respect for the patient. While this type of nursing can be administered by an LPN/LVN or RN, obtaining a master’s degree in nursing and becoming an advanced practice registered nurse allows one to practice independently, offer direct care in a variety of settings, and prescribe medicine.
How to Become a PMHN
To become a psychiatric-mental health nurse, students typically complete the following steps:
- Complete an Associate’s Degree in Nursing or a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing program
- Earn a Registered Nurse Certification
- Meet the professional experience conditions
- Enroll and complete an MSN degree with a concentration in psychiatric-mental health nursing
- Obtain PMHN certification and proper licensure (requirements vary by state)
PMHN Salary and Career Information
The expected salary, career growth, and work environment for a PMHN might include:
- Expected Salary Range: $70,052 – $107,071, according to Payscale.com’s most recent report
- Job Prospects: Very good to excellent
- Job Setting: Private practices, psychiatric and mental health treatment centers, hospitals, public health organizations, educational institutions, home health care agencies
To become a PMHN, students are typically required to meet the following job qualifications:
- Hold a current and active RN license
- Have a minimum of 2,000 hours of clinical practice in psychiatric mental health nursing
- Obtain at least 30 hours of continuing education in psychiatric mental health nursing
PMHN Job Description
A PMHN is typically responsible for the following job duties:
- Perform a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation that includes evaluation of mental status, self-harm behavior, substance use, health behaviors, trauma, and developmental and social history
- Conduct individual, family, or group psychotherapy sessions and participate in crisis intervention activities
- Collect data from multiple sources using assessment techniques and order diagnostic tests that are clinically appropriate for the patient
- Develop a plan of care to address patients’ unique conditions and prescribe proper medication (prescriptive authority varies by state)
- Provide educational and therapeutic support to patients on how best to manage symptoms and potential adverse effects of treatment options
Top Masters in Nursing Schools
A master’s degree in nursing can be the first step to becoming a nurse practitioner, nurse educator, or clinical nurse leader (CNL). Several accredited online MSN programs are listed below. Fill out any school’s form to quickly receive additional information and application materials.
|MSN: Mgmt & Org Leadership MSN: Infection Prevention MSN: Case Management MSN: Informatics||
American Sentinel University – American Sentinel University offers a wide variety of accredited online masters in nursing degrees, each with a specific focus designed to teach MSN students the exact skills they need for their particular career focus. By specializing in Management and Organizational Leadership, Infection Prevention, Case Management, or Nurse Informatics through online courses as opposed to campus programs, students can complete assignments at a time and place that is convenient.
|MSN: Nurse Midwifery MSN: Women’s Health MSN: Clinical Nurse MSN: Nurse Admin||
University of Cincinnati – - University of Cincinnati has both online and onsite courses available for students interested in advancing their careers in Nursing. The accredited options empower the student to choose a course type that works best for them. UC has a wide range of degrees available for students who are interested in Nurse Midwifery, Women’s Health Practitioner, Clinical Nursing, and Nurse Administration.
|MSN: Nurse Educator||
Capella University – This masters in nursing program is designed specifically for nurses who wish to enter the teaching profession as nurse educators. With practical applications and engaging assignments, student can accomplish the assets required to be successful in leadership and educational positions with in the nursing industry. The Nurse Educator degree curriculum is centered around the industry’s best practices and standards and is constantly updated to reflect the latest developments.
|RN to MS in Nursing MSN: Informatics MSN: Health Education||
Kaplan University – Kaplan University offers a number of top online RN to Masters In Nursing (MSN) degrees for licensed registered nurses seeking career advancement. Each program is fully online and and allows students to focus their curriculum on their particular career interest. In addition to the general program, specializations are also offered in informatics and health education.
|MSN: Clinical Leader MSN: Nursing Education MSN: Patient Services Admin RN to MSN: Clinical Leader RN to MSN: Nursing Edu. RN to MSN: Patient Services||
Sacred Heart University – Sacred Heart University offers accredited BSN to MSN and RN to MSN programs that prepare students for leadership or specialized positions, including clinical nurse leadership (RN to MSN option), nursing education (RN to MSN option), and patient care services administration (RN to MSN option).
|MS in Family Nursing MS in Women’s Health||
Georgetown University – Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies has been educating nurses and helping improve health care since 1903. Now – through the launch of an innovative online program – Georgetown is extending its master’s program to nurses around the country. Taught by highly respected faculty, the dynamic online program is designed to help the next generation of nursing leaders. Georgetown has two Masters in Nursing degrees online available: Family Nurse Practitioner and Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner.
|MSN: Nurse Educator||
Benedictine University – Benedictine University offers a fully online masters in nursing degree. This accredited program includes focuses on leadership, education, administration, global healthcare among other topics. With this versatile degree, students can choose from several opportunities as they present themselves. BU has campus and online courses available for their MSN program. The online course can be completed at a pace that is comfortable to you.