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Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

Psychiatric – Mental health nursing is a masters level specialty within nursing.  Psychiatric nurses deal with families and individuals, working toward identifying and treating mental health issues.  A Psychiatric Mental Health Advanced Practice Registered Nurse is the technical title for these practitioners who work in the field (PMH-APRN).  You can work as a psychiatric nurse with a masters or PhD in nursing.  The doctoral level degree program yields an DNP, Doctor of Nurse Practice. 

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Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Programs

Once you’ve obtained your RN and Bachelor of Science in Nursing, you’re eligible to apply for your PhD or Masters nursing programs. With a nursing masters degree, you can effectively work toward a clinical nurse specialist (CNS), Nurse Practitioner (NP), or Physician’s Assistant (PA). Psychiatry nursing is just one of many nursing specialties available. All Psychiatric nurses are certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).  Your specific certification will be based on your education and position. 

Accredited nursing programs for this field will be done so by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), and the National League for Nursing. 

Online nursing programs that offer psychiatric nursing graduate programs include Argosy University, University of North Dakota, University of Michigan – Flint, University of Virginia – Charlottesville, University of Mississippi, University of North Dakota, University of Pittsburgh, University of Newcastle, Rush University, St. Louis University, Midwestern State University, Florida State University and University of South Alabama, just to name a few. 

An online psychiatric nursing degree is a great way to get class work done with a flexible study schedule and time to continue working.

How to Become a Registered Nurse

If you haven’t yet obtained your RN, you can do so by first completing a 4-year bachelor’s program and then obtaining your RN by taking the NCLEX-RN exam.  Passing this exam will qualify you to begin working as a nurse practitioner.  If you wish you start working after just 2 years, you may consider a bridge nursing degree program (RN-to-BSN).  In a program such as this, you’ll first complete your Associate of Science in Nursing followed by your NCLEX-RN exam.  Then, you’re able to start working while you continue your bachelors (BSN).  These RN-to-BSN programs apply your credits from your ASN toward your bachelors.  It may take a little longer to obtain your 4-year degree, but you’ll be able to start obtaining work experience in your field while you continue school. 

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Salary

Registered nurse salary can range from $30,000 per year to upwards of hundred and $50,000 per year, depending on your level of experience and education. Psychiatric nurse practitioners are known to make over hundred thousand dollars per year. The average salary for a psychiatric care practitioner is $95,000 per year.