Walden University offers masters program for nurses who seek to practitioners in several fields including adult gerontology primary care and adult gerontology acute care, psychiatric and mental health practitioner, family nurse practitioner and mental health nursing practitioner.
Family nursing practitioner is an advanced practice registered nurse who offers a wide range of services focused on family health care, to patients of all ages. Family nursing practitioners maintain patients’ records, perform physical examination, diagnostic tests, prescribe medication, come up with suitable treatments plan, and treat chronic and acute illness, conditions, and injuries that are regarded as primary care. These nurses practice in a variety of setting including communal health centers, private practice, health care systems and universities (“Career as a Family Nurse Practitioner?”, 2019).
On the other hand psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner serves every aspect of mental health care as health and mental coexists dependently. The title PMHNP clinches to it definition ad these practitioners serve the public by preventing, identifying, and treating psychiatric condition through holistic approach in many ways. They assists individuals, families and the entire community to get through public health policy, program development, and administration practice, research and education of public and future PMHNPs. It combines armamentarium of body, psyche, and social knowledge utilizing biological interventions, traditional psychotherapy approaches (Williams, 2018).
My decision to pursue my psychiatric and mental health program at Walden was influenced good recommendations from friends and fellow work mates that have graduated from other programs attesting that their masters program is robust. The recommendation also included how helpful the staff and academic advisors are in helping students become successful.
Deciding on the program for my masters completion was easy for me since I was drawn to psychiatric nursing earlier in my career through helping friends who were depressed. After that, I took job working at the mental health home care. That opened the door for me as I loved working with mental health patients. During my final year in school when obtaining my bachelor’s degree, I requested to have my clinic ours completed in a behavioral unit to see, what is takes to be a mental health nurse in acute care setting. Not only did I learn a lot from there, I became passionate with working with that group of patients. Naturally I chose to pursue my master’s program in psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioner program. Psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioners work with all groups of patients that are mentally challenged both in acute care and clinic setting. As a psychiatric nurse practitioner, I will assess, diagnose, provide therapy, and prescribe medications for patients with psychiatric disorders, medical organic brain disorders, and substance abuse problems (Walden University, n.d.)
I choose a psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) program based on curiosity and my passion for helping the mentally ill. After obtaining an associate degree in nursing, I worked in homecare primarily with people who have a mental illness I enjoyed working with this group of people. When I was ready to pursue a higher degree in a provider position, I naturally choose what I was passionate about. A friend and coworker recommended a psychiatric mental
health nurse practitioner program through Walden University due to its flexibility and robust application. As a PMHNP, I will assess, diagnose, provide therapy, and prescribe medications for patients with psychiatric disorders, medical organic brain disorders, and substance
abuse problems (Walden University, n.d.)
Moreover, the job prospects for PMHNP has been on the increase. The National Institute of mental health (2018) has stated that nearly one in five people in America has a mental illness. This number translates to 46 million people. With these numbers on the rise, I know that I will never be out of a job. There was no difficulty in me deciding to go into the mental health field. Earlier on during my career, I had the opportunity to work not only with the mentally challenged but also other patients that had more medical problems but over the years, I had developed a deep passion for patients who have a mental illness. With inspiration from a friend and five years of experience working with psychiatric and mentally ill patients, it is clear PMHNP is the right choice for me. Mental illness is one of the most significant health issues facing America, and NPS must come together to be part of the solution (AANP, n.d.). As a PMHP, I wanted to be part of the group offering a solution to the problem.
My decision to go into the psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioner program was based on two factors- curiosity and passion. Fifteen years ago, a friend mine was battling depression, and I watched how debilitating this can be, and that got me curious. Why is she suffering from depression? I would visit my friend at the psychiatric ward, and while at home, I will always check up on her. Caring for her made me develop an interest in mental health, and that was the beginning of my decision to go into the field of mental health. While I was seeking a bachelor’s degree in nursing, I requested to have my capstone hours completed in a behavioral health unit to see what it takes to work with this group of people. At the end of my clinical, not only did I gain extensive knowledge I also enjoyed working there too.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) is an American organization formed in 2013 by a merger between the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the American College of Nurse Practitioners to provide nurse practitioners with a unified way to network and advocate their issues (AANP, n.d.). By joining the (AANP), I will be empowered to advance quality health care through practice, education, advocacy, research, and leadership (AANP, n.d.) Membership is by an online application and payment of an annual fee of $135 for regular nurse practitioners and a fee of $55 for students enrolled in the nurse practitioner program. Joining AANP will also provide access to the growing specialty practice group of psych and mental health community that engages with other like-minded NPs with interest in Psych mental health (AANP, n.d.).
Career as a Family Nurse Practitioner?. American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2019). Retrieved 14 November 2021, from https://www.aanp.org/news-feed/are-you-considering-a-career-as-a-family-nurse-practitioner.
Williams, H. (2019). Nurse Practitioners integral to mental health outcomes. Health Times. Retrieved 14 November 2021, from https://healthtimes.com.au/hub/mental-health/37/practice/hw/nurse-practitioners-integral-to-mental-health-outcomes/4438/.
Mental health Information. (2019, February). In National Institute of
Mental Health. Retrieved from https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/mentalillness.shtml
Walden University. (n.d.). Walden University Catalog. Psychiatric
Mental Health Nurse Practitioner – Master of Science in Nursing
(MSN) Retrieved October 30, 2019, from