Some questions for PMHNP's

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    I published this in psych nursing forum with no luck, so I'm trying here. Sorry for redundancy if you've already read this post

    I'm a nursing student considering a career in psychiatric nursing and eventually going for an advanced degree in that field. I want to ask current PMHNP's a few questions. Your answers are much appreciated as I'm trying to figure out which road to take.

    What do you like and don't like about your job?

    Do you feel that getting a DNP adds anything to one's clinical practice? I've been browsing university websites and I get an impression that the classes added on top of regular PMHNP program are really not geared towards advancing practical skills but more towards administration/research. When it comes down to the service you provide to your client, does having a DNP really matter?

    If you specialiced as a Family PMHNP, how is your practice with teens/children different from treating adults?

    Do you believe that having med-surg experience would help/helps you?
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  3. 6 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    Hello there!
    I like everything about my career. It is always interesting if you have the temperament for it, which I do . I've been an NP in psych for about 10 yrs. Started as psych. RN which was invaluable experience, however, med. surg is also relevant as there is much "co-morbidity" a dark way of saying both psych. and medical probs. I think you WILL deal with psyc. in med surg. and any area. Can't answer your question re: family PMHNP, I don't do that. The DNP (and I am a DNP student) seems to vary quite a bit from Univ. to Univ. There are a few I have seen which have particular clinical tracks - including a few for psych. - although most seem geared towards enhancing practice w. evidence-based skills and etc... Do you need that degree? No. Not now, maybe it would help in the future and could enhance your career. I found experience in psych. most helpful. Good luck, and any other questions, fire away...
    Balki likes this.
  5. 0
    Hi Smitty8:

    Wanted to ask some questions. I work as a teacher in psychiatric hospital now. I'm starting my long journey to become a psych NP in an ADN program.

    1. Do you feel that PMHNP programs provide enough training and experience to be a competent therapist? Few programs I've looked have classes devoted to therapy. Most places I see have something like 'psych NP 1' so maybe the content is mixed in somewhere. I've been told if really want to be rigously trained in therapy w/o a PhD to consider Social Work.

    2. How many years of experience does it take to become a competant professional?
  6. 1
    Quote from NY_teach
    Hi Smitty8:

    Wanted to ask some questions. I work as a teacher in psychiatric hospital now. I'm starting my long journey to become a psych NP in an ADN program.

    1. Do you feel that PMHNP programs provide enough training and experience to be a competent therapist? Few programs I've looked have classes devoted to therapy. Most places I see have something like 'psych NP 1' so maybe the content is mixed in somewhere. I've been told if really want to be rigously trained in therapy w/o a PhD to consider Social Work.
    You might want to consider that one of the benefits of PMHNP training is that many patients have both psych and physical problems so an awareness of both areas is helpful.

    2. How many years of experience does it take to become a competant professional?
    Forever...
    forthebirds likes this.
  7. 0
    In your opinion as a seasoned profession, what should a prospective student be looking for in a graduate program?
  8. 1
    Quote from NY_teach
    In your opinion as a seasoned profession, what should a prospective student be looking for in a graduate program?
    Are you calling me old, lol! I look at where the school is; their reputation; their curriculum in comparison to other schools; I check out faculty (articles, books, etc.) if they have them on their website. That's about it.
    jpRN84 likes this.
  9. 0
    Hi again- I do think that most Psych. NP programs probably do provide ample experience/education to do therapy, however that is bound to vary widely from Univ. to Univ and who is your mentor/teacher. From what I can see from the outside looking in, some social work schools do a very nice job too, and some - not. I know of one that seems to focus more on diversity issues than clinical - who needs that? But I am not bashing social work, I LOVE social workers I also wonder if some of the best therapists get that way through training or temperament - perhaps both. I have seen excellent therapists in every professional category and also *ahem* klunkers in every professional category!


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