Shenandoah University

Eleanor Wade Custer School of Nursing

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, MSN


Admissions Office

1460 University Drive

Winchester, VA 22601

United States





Program Information

Degrees Offered:

M.S.N. - Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Format: Campus

Program Description:

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) Track is designed to provide the nurse with the necessary biopsychopharmacotheraputic knowledge and skills regarding differential diagnosis, health promotion and psychotropic medication management (prescriptive authority) for the PMH patient across the life span. The specialty also consists of didactic and clinical course content essential to provide psychotherapy to individuals, families, and groups within hospitals and the community settings. Graduates of this specialty have earned their MSN degree or Post Master’s Certificate and are eligible to sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Certification PMHNP exams. Clinical Experience: A variety of clinical psychiatric inpatient and ambulatory care settings to include primary care sites are utilized. The psychiatric practice (PMH695) course combines didactic and a 120 hour clinical experience to apply differential diagnosis and medication management principles to care of the acute and chronic psychiatric clients. Students will have 180 clinical hours in both individual therapy and also group and family therapy along with 120 hours in primary care settings such as the emergency room where the students learns to integrate and differentiate primary care and psychiatric mental health care. The student completes at least 700 clinical hours by the end of the program of study. The Division of Nursing offers a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) certificate program for RNs who already hold master of science in psychiatric and mental health nursing. This certificate program is designed to provide the psychiatric nurse specialist with the necessary knowledge and skills regarding differential diagnosis, health promotion and psychotropic medication management (prescriptive authority) fundamental to the role of PMHNP. Didactic and clinical course content will assist the psychiatric clinical specialist transition beyond psychotherapist, consultant and educator by adding knowledge and skills related to the practitioner role. Focus areas include ongoing assessment, health promotion, differential diagnosis, planning and medication management of psychiatric mental health clients across their life spans. Completion of this course will qualify you to take the PMHNP exams, family and adult versions offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).


The Division of Nursing offers baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degree programs which are fully accredited by: Commission of Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

Facts & Figures

Financial Aid: No

International Financial Aid: No

Classification: Master's College or University I

Locale: Small City

Size & Settings: 3,000-5,999

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