Mental Health Nurse Career


The mental health nurse, also known as a psychiatric nurse takes care of individuals with mental health disabilities.  The tasks of a mental health nurse include addressing basic needs of the patient, administer medication, monitor effects of medication, diagnose patient’s condition, and assist the patient in various tasks.

One is to coordinate with the doctors and medical staff in order to develop psychiatric care programs or treatment plans.  He is to educate the family regarding the programs or treatment plans.  One may also be tasked to educate nursing students. With this challenging career, one has to have the proper training, experience, and formal education.

How to become a Mental Health Nurse

To become mental health nurse, one has to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing.  After degree completion, one has to take and pass the National Council Licensure Examination.  Passing the exam will earn one a license to practice as a registered nurse.  Gain relevant experience as well as specialized training in the field of mental health nursing.  Obtain a certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.  One may take advanced courses or earn a master’s degree in mental health nursing.

Mental Health Nurse Courses, training, programs

A nursing degree gives one the necessary knowledge and skills required for this type of career.  The program includes subject areas such as introduction to nursing practice, health indicators, discipline in nursing, anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology, promoting health and healing, and ethics in health care. Through the program one is able to gain practical skills through hands-on activities.

TOP 5 colleges/Universities

Johns Hopkins University, Maryland

University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania

University of Washington, Washington

University of California-San Francisco, California

University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Mental Health Nurse Jobs, opportunities, salaries/pay

A mental health nurse may earn an annual salary of $72,000.  The salary is dependent on the work location, employer, experience, and benefits.  Employment may be found in a psychiatric hospital, medical facility, long-term care facility, health department, or mental health agency.  One may advance to a clinical specialist position through graduate studies and several years of experience.

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Health Care Education Requirements

Category: Nursing Careers

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