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No. 1 in Master of Science in Nursing graduates in the U.S.**

The need for mental health services has never been greater, yet the U.S. continues to face a critical shortage of professionals in the field.

Meet the demand for mental health providers and make a difference in the healthcare system as a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP).

In the Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) specialization, one of the few PMHNP programs offered fully online, you will learn to assess, diagnose, provide therapy, and prescribe medications for patients with psychiatric disorders, medical organic brain disorders, and substance abuse problems. Courses focus on providing advanced skills and practicum training for treating children, adults, groups, and families. The curriculum includes a strong pharmacology component.

Upon completion of this specialization, you will be prepared to:

  • Pursue national certification as a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.
  • Provide quality mental health services for pediatric, adult, and geriatric patients.
  • Diagnose and treat psychiatric disorders as well as differentiate between medical disorders with psychiatric symptoms.
  • Work in mental health clinics, social service agencies, psychiatric hospitals, schools, and private practices.
  • Synthesize organizational/systems leadership for cost-effective specialist nursing practice that contributes to high-quality healthcare delivery, advancement of the nursing profession, and social change.
  • Critique evidence-based literature drawing from diverse theoretical perspectives and pertinent research to guide decision making that demonstrates best practices for specialist nursing practice in a global society.
  • Integratively assess, diagnose, plan, implement, and evaluate cost-effective healthcare strategies that reduce health disparities by patient/population advocacy for access to specialist nursing care.
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively communicate using audience-specific oral, written, and information technology for professional delivery of specialist nursing care.
  • Evaluate health needs of diverse populations for necessary teaching/coaching functions based on specialist nursing knowledge to restore/promote health and prevent illness/injury.
  • Exhibit ongoing commitment to professional development and value of nursing theories/ethical principles (altruism, autonomy, human dignity, integrity, social justice) in accordance with ethically responsible, legally accountable, specialist nursing practice.
  • Implement specialist nursing roles to promote quality improvement of patient-centered care in accordance with professional practice standards that transform health outcomes for diverse populations.

In Walden’s MSN program, you can:

  • Collaborate with nurses from around the U.S. in an interactive online environment.
  • Learn from expert teaching faculty—100% of whom hold doctoral degrees.
  • Gain the opportunity to translate knowledge into practice by designing, developing, and implementing a project in a professional healthcare setting.
  • Acquire the knowledge needed to act as a change agent and apply your enhanced expertise within the healthcare environment
  • Join Phi Nu, Walden’s chartered chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, and connect with nurses around the world to share the latest nursing research and best practices in clinical, scientific, and leadership areas.

Career Impact

There is a critical need not only for quality mental health services, but for improved access to these services. As a graduate of our Master of Science in Nursing program with a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) specialization, you will be prepared to meet this need in a variety of settings.

This program can help position you for roles in the following settings:

  • Mental health clinics
  • Correctional facilities
  • Inpatient or outpatient psychiatric facilities
  • Private psychiatric practices
  • Community mental health centers
  • Domestic violence shelters
  • Residential substance abuse facilities
  • Schools

Learn more about top industry sectors, most in-demand job skills and top job titles for MSN grads.

A 2011 national salary survey by the Advance Healthcare Network showed that PMHNPs made an average yearly salary of $92,396, while family medicine nurse practitioners made $89,317.

Graduates of our program will be eligible to take the national PMHNP certification examination through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of this degree program.

Find detailed information for this program if you hold a BSN or hold a RN, including possible occupations, completion rate, program costs, and median student loan debt.

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Make a Difference as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Make a Difference with a MSN PMHNP

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*Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
The baccalaureate degree program in nursing (BSN), master’s degree program in nursing (MSN), and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program at Walden University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education ( Officially recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a national accreditation agency, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) is an autonomous accrediting agency, contributing to the improvement of the public’s health. CCNE ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate, and residency programs in nursing.

**Source: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) IPEDS database. Retrieved July 2017, using CIP code 51.3801 (Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse). Includes 2016 preliminary data.

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