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Clarke’s DNP Adds Psychiatric Mental Health Concentration

By Clarke News  |  October 24, 2017

Clarke University is now offering a new BSN-DNP concentration for those interested in certification as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP). A post-graduate certificate option will also be available for those already certified in another Nurse Practitioner (NP) specialty.

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners learn the advanced psychiatric skills of therapy, clinical management, and prescribing psychiatric medications to patients. In addition, they provide primary mental health care to patients seeking mental health services in a wide range of settings. This includes the assessment, diagnosis, and management of mental health problems and psychiatric disorders in both children and adults. DNP graduates with a concentration in PMHNP can work in settings such as psychiatric mental health inpatient or outpatient facilities, clinics, domestic violence shelters, and schools.

When asked about the new concentration, Jan Lee, Ph.D., Professor of Nursing and Nursing Department Chair, said, “The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner DNP program will prepare advanced practice nurses to expand the cadre of mental health providers in the tristate area. Graduates of Clarke’s new PMHNP program will help meet this critical need.”

The first cohort of PMHNP DNP students will enroll for fall 2018. Classes will include foundational coursework for all advanced practice roles, including comprehensive health assessment, pathophysiology, pharmacology, and health promotion. Psychiatric nursing coursework includes psychiatric assessment and symptom management; psychopharmacology; individual, group and family therapy; and ethics.

In addition to the coursework for this program, PMHNP students will be required to complete 1,000 clinical hours to graduate from the DNP program. Students may complete the DNP program with a concentration in PMHNP in three years as a full-time student or five years as a part-time student. Graduates may apply for American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) national certification as a Family Lifespan Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

Associate Professor of Nursing and DNP Program Coordinator Ann Weltin, DNP, FNP-BC, CNM, added, “We are very excited about this new addition to the DNP program offerings at Clarke. Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners are one of the most in-demand nursing specialties currently available. Nurses in this profession care for the whole person and make a positive impact in mental health.”

Individuals already possessing an NP license may complete a post-graduate certificate in PMHNP in 18-24 months.

Individuals interested in an advanced degree in DNP with the PMHNP concentration or who want to learn more about the post-graduate certificate in PMHNP are encouraged to visit our website or email