Initial interviews of mental health clients

Despite what you may believe (or may have been told), there is no such thing as one “right” way to do an interview. In fact, there are numerous books written about the various ways of conducting the clinical interview. In actual clinical practice, you will find the format that “works” best for you and addresses your unique strengths and the needs of the client.

In this Discussion, you will practice finding the interview format that works for you and share those ideas with your colleagues for feedback.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Review the Learning Resources.
  • Develop an interview format you would use for an initial interview of a client.

Attach the interview format document you would use for an initial interview of a client.

  • Describe what interview format your preceptor uses for the initial interview of a client.
  • Describe which element of your interview format is most helpful in your practice.

Required Readings

American Nurses Association. (2014). Psychiatric-mental health nursing: Scope and standards of practice (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

  • Standard 5C “Consultation” (page 57)

Note: Throughout the program you will be reading excerpts from the ANA’s Scope & Standards of Practice for Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing. It is essential to your success on the ANCC board certification exam for Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioners that you know the scope of practice of the advanced practice psychiatric/mental health nurse. You should also be able to differentiate between the generalist RN role in psychiatric/mental health nursing and the advanced practice nurse role.

Sadock, B. J., Sadock, V. A., & Ruiz, P. (2014). Kaplan & Sadock’s synopsis of psychiatry: Behavioral sciences/clinical psychiatry (11th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer.

  • Section 5.1, “Psychiatric Interview, Mental Status Examination” (pp. 192–211)
  • Section 5.2, “The Psychiatric Report and Medical Record” (pp. 211–217)
  • Section 5.3, “Psychiatric Rating Scales” (pp. 217–236)
  • Section 5.5, “Personality Assessment: Adults and Children” (pp. 246–257)
  • Section 5.7, “Medical Assessment and Laboratory Testing in Psychiatry” (pp. 266–275)
  • Chapter 6, “Classification in Psychiatry” (pp. 290–308)

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

  • “Cautionary Statement for Forensic Use of DSM-5”
  • “Assessment Measures”
  • “Cultural Formulation”
  • “Glossary of Technical Terms”
  • “Glossary of Cultural Concepts of Distress”

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