Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Job Description, Key Duties and Responsibilities

By | September 1, 2023
Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner job description, duties, tasks, and responsibilities
Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners provide mental healthcare services to both children and adults. Image source:

This post presents in-depth information on the job description of a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, to help you learn the key duties, tasks, and responsibilities of the role.

What Does a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Do?

A psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) is an advanced practice registered nurse who has acquired appropriate training to provide mental healthcare services to individuals, including adults and children, and families with drug abuse problem, psychiatric disorders or organic brain disorders.

PMHNP can work in several places, including primary healthcare facilities, psychiatric emergency services, and mental health clinics.

Others are in private practice, skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, and community health centers and hospitals.

The job description of a PMHNP entails diagnosing, conducting, and prescribing medications for patients having psychiatric-mental health problems and those likely to have them.

As a licensed advanced practice nurse, the psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner is responsible for providing emergency psychiatric services, physical and psychosocial examination of their patients.

Their role also includes developing appropriate treatment plan and providing effective management of patient care with proper evaluation.

They may also function as educators and consultants to staff, families, groups, legislators, communities, and corporations, as well as participate in developing policies and healthcare reforms, improving service quality, and practice evaluation.

The PMHNP is an advanced specialty in the nursing practice and to become one, the individual needs to go through a Master’s or doctoral degree program in psychiatric-mental health nursing.

PMHNPs can also choose to further specialize within the psychiatric-mental health specialty area. These include gerontological-psychiatric nursing, child and adolescent mental health nursing, and substance use or drug abuse disorders nursing.

Other areas of specialization include consulting with patients and families having multiple and complex psychiatric disorders; and working in a collaborative and integrative roles with primary healthcare providers.

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Job Description Example/Sample/Template

By training and experience, psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners can perform a wide range of duties within their area of specialty; however, they are generally assigned specific functions by their employers that reflect the peculiar needs of the institution they are working with.

Below is a sample of a typical PMHNP job description, consisting of key duties and responsibilities they are mostly required to carry out.

  • Responsible for providing outpatient and residential care to patients showing a change or decline in mental status, chronic or urgent medical conditions
  • Work independently with other members of the medical team, with entitlements to specific clinical privileges approved by the clinic’s Medical Executive Board
  • Take part in an interdisciplinary team that provides primary care to employees and patients
  • Perform patients histories and physicals, risk factor assessment, ordering of therapeutic and diagnostic tests; and attend to consultations and appointments
  • Prescribe medications following the clinic’s policy, formulary and relevant regulations of the State
  • Consult with physicians on cases that are beyond the scope of qualification of PMHNP
  • Put all relevant patient data in medical records and case presentations
  • Formulate, execute and review healthcare education delivered to patients and families for diseases prevention
  • Ensure smooth communication with other health professionals for effective delivering of clinic service to patients
  • Provide consultation to the clinic’s nursing and medical staff for improvement in their work performance, which enhances overall quality service delivery of the clinic

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Job Description for Resume

Seeking a job as a PMHNP will require you to have a resume to submit to prospective employers. The resume should show that you have the competence and experience to succeed on the job and add value to the organization.
The job description example above has valuable information you can use in writing a good resume that can get the employers attention.

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Requirements: Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities for Career Success

The following are some of the key qualities and qualifications commonly required to work as a PMHNP in most healthcare facilities across the States:

  • Proficient in the English language, both in writing and speaking to be able to communicate clearly with all stakeholders, including patients, families, clinic staff and other healthcare professionals
  • Possess and maintain graduate professional nurse, and nurse practitioner registration in a state, which must be unrestricted, current, complete, and active
  • Obtain Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner or Mental Health Nurse Practitioner certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)
  • Possess Bachelor’s degree in Nursing followed by a Master’s degree in Psychiatric or Mental Health Nursing from a state approved and accredited school for professional nursing training
  • Possess strong understanding of societies and their impact on mental health; ability to solve problems, monitor and examine patients
  • Be compassionate, sensitive, and possess strong reasoning and thinking skills
  • Possess strong computer skills, including working with word processing and data entering applications, as well as with medical software applications
  • Ability to work effectively with medical equipment, including EKG machines, suction kits, surgical lasers, vision charts, and defibrillators