School of Nursing

Psych Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Our DNP PMHNP program features:

  • Quality clinical placements preparing practice-ready graduates.
  • Low student to faculty ratio.
  • Curriculum that emphasizes strong life-span focus.
  • 100% board certification pass rate the past 6 years.
  • Most  graduates employed within 3 months of graduation.
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Now Accepting Applications

September 1st 2019 - January 6th 2020 – Portland campus
December 5th, 2019 – March 15th, 2020 Distance program

Admission requirements and instructions

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program prepares graduates for advanced specialty practice with a dual emphasis on intervention through psychotherapy and psychopharmacology.  PMHNP's intervene with vulnerable populations and promote mental health across the lifespan. They work with children, adolescents, adults, and older persons in a variety of settings, including community mental health clinics, public health departments, hospitals and outpatient mental health clinics, health maintenance organizations, government facilities, schools of nursing, and independent private practice.

Coursework – Offered for students in Portland and regionally throughout Oregon

Courses are supported through Sakai, a web based course management system which allows asynchronous delivery of additional class materials and discussions forums in addition to campus based intensives.

PMHMP Distance Students

In Oregon, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners deliver critically important services, especially to rural and medically underserved populations. Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners (PMHNP)  apply advanced knowledge and clinical skills  to deliver quality mental health care. We commit to working with you to advance your education and career goals. 

Recognizing those in rural areas typically need to obtain their education while meeting other obligations in their communities (i.e. for work and/or family), we use technology and innovation to allow you to complete coursework in your home as much as possible. At the same time, we work to ensure the education you receive is of the highest quality and prepares you for independent practice, essential for clinicians in rural areas. The distance program allows students the opportunity to connect with fellow students in the region; the regions are Eastern Oregon in La Grande and Southern Oregon in Ashland and Klamath Falls.

Distance students will be required to travel to one of the regional campuses. Travel varies according to term and specialty program; some terms require no travel and others may require visits up to twice a month. Travel is minimized during winter term.  These sessions on the regional campus are for clinical supervision and skills testing. Attendance of intensive sessions  on the Portland campus are approximately once per term*, usually a maximum of three days. Additionally, students may need to attend clinical immersion experiences in Portland when similar experiences are not available in home communities ( for example, acute psychiatric hospital NP role). These will be arranged in consultation with each student to minimize disruption.Our commitment to transparency and communication about delivery methods and required travel includes having schedules available three months in advance.

*OHSU, as an Oregon state institution of higher learning, uses a quarter system.

What you will study and learn

The Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner program at OHSU School of Nursing has earned a national reputation for its emphasis on primary mental healthcare. Students study the interaction among biological and neurophysiological vulnerabilities, psychological and developmental factors, and social and physical environmental stressors.

The program emphasizes mental health nursing interventions, including psychotherapy and psychopharmacology.  Supervised clinical experience is available primarily in community-based agencies and programs. 

Students in this program can complete the DNP degree in three years and become licensed as a PMHNP.  A practice-focused curriculum will support the career trajectory for those pursuing expert clinical practice and leadership as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

DNP student learning outcomes (applies to all Post-Master’s DNP and all APRN specialties)

  1. Demonstrate readiness to enter clinical practice via specialty competencies with the appropriate scientific knowledge, and considerations for its application to practice.
  2. Apply ethical principles along with the standards of professional conduct to clinical care, research, and education.
  3. Evaluate emerging healthcare systems and policy that influence delivery of cost effective patient care.
  4. Generate entry level practice scholarship through the completion of a clinical practice improvement project based on the principles of improvement science.
  5. Model interprofessional communication and collaboration to improve individual and/or population health outcomes.
  6. Identify and address gaps in professional knowledge through ongoing reflection to support the principle of life-long learning.

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner student learning outcomes

  1. Develop therapeutic relationships as a basis for provision mental health care across the lifespan.
  2. Independently conduct a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation and a diagnostic and biopsychosocial formulation for mental health and psychiatric problems across the lifespan.    
  3. Utilize best practices and evidence to develop treatment plans in collaboration with patients, families and other care providers.   
  4. Manage the treatment of psychiatric disorders and mental health problems for safe and effective care across the lifespan including evaluation for quality outcomes.    
  5. Use effective communication skills and technologies to provide collaborative care for diverse communities.
  6. Demonstrate standards of professional conduct including, integrity, honesty, self-reflection, ethical principles and legal responsibilities in professional activities.  
  7. Advocate for quality outcomes in mental health systems through policy change and quality improvement.
Course Catalog

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Contact us about this program today!

We're here to answer any questions you have about the OHSU School of Nursing.