Becoming a psych NP... no psych experience - pg.2 | allnurses

Becoming a psych NP... no psych experience - page 2

I have three years med-surg experience and two years+ Medical ICU experience. Ive never worked psych as an RN but I was a mental health worker for one and a half years and I loved it. I've always... Read More

  1. Visit  Jules A profile page
    #13 0
    Quote from TheOldGuy
    Don't worry. If you feel drawn to the field, go for it. You don't need years of experience as a psych RN to be a PMHNP - the roles are hugely different.
    Although an ICU nurse is definitely more suited for these programs than the new CNLs with no nursing experience I disagree that the roles are hugely different in the regard that both RNs and NPs need to assess the situation and make decisions on what medication to either prescribe or administer in crisis so having that experience to draw from is crucial, imo.
  2. Visit  TheOldGuy profile page
    #14 0
    Jules, are you an NP? NP student?

    Most psych RNs work in an inpatient setting - relatively controlled. Typically the focus is stabilization. The RN doesn't diagnose. The RN calls the doc because they need something. The RN might suggest a particular med but more often than not simply presents the doc with the situation (often emergency meds!). The RN is not doing titration of meds over weeks or months to find the right combo that works for a pt. Having the responsibilityy to make the decision regarding diagnosis and what to prescribe, not to mention trying to find the right dosing is hugely different than observing and administering.
  3. Visit  Jules A profile page
    #15 0
    Quote from TheOldGuy
    Jules, are you an NP? NP student?

    Most psych RNs work in an inpatient setting - relatively controlled. Typically the focus is stabilization. The RN doesn't diagnose. The RN calls the doc because they need something. The RN might suggest a particular med but more often than not simply presents the doc with the situation (often emergency meds!). The RN is not doing titration of meds over weeks or months to find the right combo that works for a pt. Having the responsibilityy to make the decision regarding diagnosis and what to prescribe, not to mention trying to find the right dosing is hugely different than observing and administering.
    Haven't taken my boards yet. How about you? Your above paragraph sounds like a large list of reasons someone with no psychiatric experience might not be well suited to graduate as a NP. While I agree that the roles are different before I had even taken a single NP class I had a good read on what the intake would be diagosed with, the medication and dose the physician would order, common side effects and what to do about them and was able to handle the responsibility of deciding on which prn to administer from a fairly large list based on the patient's presentation during a crisis. We can agree to disagree but I value my floor experience and daily interactions with physicians and residents far more than any course I have taken.
  4. Visit  RNvampire profile page
    #16 0
    Can you shadow an RN or NP in a psych facility before quitting your hospital job? I would say working in psych is a passion because the pay is awful and the patients can be very violent at times. I love it, but that's just me, and I have to work extra to make ends meet. You won't pull the same salary in psych as you do working ICU--unless you are an NP probably. 'Least not in the southeast US.
  5. Visit  kate4rn profile page
    #17 1
    I think every kind of nursing gives you psych experience, with patients and family. I hope the OP is happy and kicking butt as an Advanced Practice Nurse.
  6. Visit  PsychGuy profile page
    #18 0
    I've probably mentioned somewhere in this thread that I made the transition. ER RN to PMHNP.

    What I wanted to add was that the student I'm precepting with lot of inpatient psych RN experience seems to be struggling with the RN to NP transition as well as inpatient to outpatient.

    My views are my views, but I truly do not perceive that anything I did anywhere as a RN is especially helpful for my present role.
  7. Visit  zayrhia profile page
    #19 0
    Quote from PsychGuy
    I've probably mentioned somewhere in this thread that I made the transition. ER RN to PMHNP.

    What I wanted to add was that the student I'm precepting with lot of inpatient psych RN experience seems to be struggling with the RN to NP transition as well as inpatient to outpatient.

    My views are my views, but I truly do not perceive that anything I did anywhere as a RN is especially helpful for my present role.
    Thanks PsychGuy for this perspective.

    Not too long ago, it used to be that RNs had to do med-surg before entering a specialty and now it's almost the norm to enter into a specialty as a new grad. And unless a study comes out indicating otherwise, these nurses appear to be doing fine.

    JulesA probably thinks it was her RN experience that served her well as a APRN, but it may just be she has an extreme interest and passion in this field and her RN experience amplified that interest.

    What I'm saying is that prior experience in psych is great, but other intangibles and/or transferable nursing skills will serve a nurse without psych experience just as well....if they have a true interest in the field.

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