Working as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Sample Essay

Working as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Sample Essay

NB: This is a sample essay – the format: Referencing and formating not fully included.

Working as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Sample Essay

Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (PMHNPs) are a group of behavioral health professionals who have been registered and authorized to provide mental health care to individuals, families, and communities. They contribute to the advancement of behavioral health in various ways.  To be able to perform their roles effectively as mental health care providers, PMHNPs need to obtain relevant Working as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner training, be able to develop strong therapeutic relationships with patients and their families, and implement evidence-based therapeutic interventions to address clients’ problems (reference). Today’s PMHNPs are expected to understand their roles, the reasons for becoming PMHNPs, how they can serve to address patients’ and populations’ needs, and the career outlook of the role.

Roles of a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

PMHNPs play a crucial role in increasing mental health care access to patients and their families across the life span. They also help to strengthen the health systems in their states to enable them to meet the health demands of underserved communities (reference). According to (reference), an important role of a PMHNP is to partner with individuals and their families who are suffering from mental health problems to enable them to achieve recovery goals. Their daily routine in a healthcare facility entails conducting intake screening and evaluating patients for mental health problems. PMHNPs also teach self-care activities, health promotion, and maintenance to patients, their families, and the community (American Psychiatric Nurses Association, 2021). Like other nurse practitioners, PMHNPs must utilize evidence-based practice when working with their patients.

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Their role is to administer evidence-based mental health interventions to stabilize their clients and enable them to achieve improved health and well-being. They also engage in the rehabilitation of patient with severe behavioral problems. According to (reference), coordinated care and interdisciplinary team collaboration helps to prevent duplicative care and ensure that patients receive person-centered care that adequately addresses their needs at the individual level. PMHNPs engage in coordinated care and work with interdisciplinary teams to help individuals and families attain recovery goals.

Reasons for Becoming a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The primary reason why there is a need to have as many PMHNPs as possible is to address the shortage that the country is currently facing. The United States is currently facing a shortage of mental health providers. This is preventing individuals, families, and communities from accessing mental health services (reference). PMHNPs provide mental health care in a variety of settings including clinics, prisons, and rehabilitation centers. According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the available number of PMHNPs is not enough to serve the designated mental health facilities in the United States. About 70% mental health needs of United States citizens are not being met at the moment (reference). The best way to address this problem is to train and hire additional PMHNPs.

Recent studies have revealed statistics that confirm the shortage of PMHNPs in the United States. For instance, the Mental Health America advocacy group revealed that the currently available number of mental health professionals is not enough to adequately serve the psychological health needs of more than 10 million adults and about 28% of youths with severe mental health disorders (reference). The agency further indicated that the status of adolescents’ health status has been worsening since 2012 owing to the shortage of PMHNPs. For instance, there has been a significant rise in the prevalence of the major depressive disorder among adolescents aged between 12 and 17 years (reference). These numbers could be reduced if only there were adequate numbers of trained PMHNPs deployed to mental health facilities.

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             The country needs PMHNPs to help reduce rates of substance abuse and suicidal ideation among members of its population. In a report documented by Mental Health America, the United States has been recording constant incidences of mental health problems among adults since 2012 with high rates of substance abuse and suicidal ideation being reported. Between 2012 and 2017, rates of suicidal ideation among adults increased from 3.77% to 4.19%. During the same period, the frequency of mental illnesses rose to 18.57% from 18.19% (reference). Rates of substance abuse and other mental health illnesses among youths and adults can reduce greatly when the country takes the initiative to train and hire additional PMHNPs.

Addressing Health Needs

PMHNPs can address the health needs of today’s patients, families, and communities in a number of ways. For example, PMHNPs can help children who are suffering from psychological issues following exposure or repeated exposure to traumatic events (reference). Children who experience abuse at the hands of adults or irresponsible parents can suffer mental health problems that can best be solved by a PMHNP. The other way through which a PMHNP can contribute to improving people’s health is by working with veterans who have faced traumatic events. Veterans normally need the services of mental health professionals such as PMHNPs to achieve quality mental health and well-being. PMHNPs also work with older adults with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers to improve their psychological well-being (reference). Generally, teens who are living with severe mental health problems, people who have been diagnosed with substance abuse disorders, and persons who are experiencing suicidal ideation both at home and the community need the services of a PMHNP to achieve an improved quality of life.

Career Outlook

The future career environment for PMHNPs is promising. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANPs) work in a variety of settings and treat patients with different health problems including depression, anxiety, substance abuse, suicidal ideation, dementia, and insomnia among other illnesses. Patients, families, and communities with these mental health issues need the services of PMHNPs almost every day. On average, a PMHNP can see approximately 12 patients per day. The average earning for a full-time PMHNP in the United States is $137,000 (reference). Since the job outlook for PMHNPs is generally good, nurses should train as PMHNPs to obtain the necessary professional knowledge and skills that they can apply to address the existing shortage.

Conclusion

PMHNPs play a crucial role in increasing mental health care access to patients and their families across the life span. The primary reason why there is a need to have as many PMHNPs as possible is to address the shortage that the country is currently facing. Rates of substance abuse and other mental health illnesses among youths and adults can reduce greatly when the country takes the initiative to train and hire additional PMHNPs. The future career environment for PMHNPs is promising. Therefore, nurses should train as PMHNPs to obtain the necessary professional knowledge and skills that they can apply to address the existing shortage.

References

(List of References follows)

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