PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper

PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper

The Goals And Objectives And How I Achieved Through The Practicum Experience

A psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) screens, diagnoses, and treats mental health diseases. They oversee case management, teach self-care activities, monitor psychotropic medication, provide psychotherapy, make referrals, and coordinate care (Baker, L. M. 2019). The American psychiatric association states that 44% of adults and 20% of children in the United States of America suffer from mental illnesses (Whitney, D. G., & Peterson, M. D. 2019). This led to the expansion of health insurance coverage under the Accountable care act, which ensures mental health treatment, thus, increasing the demand for mental illness services with no significant improvement in the mental health workforce. The workforce gap increases the need to train more students to cover the service need. As a PMHNP student, I attended my practical experiences at the clinic with objectives that include learning how to clerk patients with mental health illnesses, making appropriate diagnoses by following the DSM-5 criteria, monitoring patients taking psychotropic medication, and learning how to conduct a mental health assessment. I was able to achieve these goals through the help of the nurse practitioner. Additionally, I attended the clinic on time to handle as many patients as I could. I incorporated the PNP skills with the clerk and conduct an appropriate mental health assessment. PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper


Three Most Challenging Patients I Encountered During The Practicum Experience

The most challenging experience was clerking patients with schizophrenia, psychosis, and substance addiction disorder. Patients with substance-induced psychosis and schizophrenia elicit strong and negative emotions towards me, making me feel uncomfortable and provoking unpleasant confrontations. Substance-induced psychosis and addictive disorders patients prefer using drugs rather than taking the prescribed medication. My objective as the PMHNP is to monitor psychotropic medication. The majority of these patients abuse or fail to comply, hence, therapeutic expectations are hard to achieve.

What Did You Learn From This Experience?

During my practice, I learned that ethical considerations are important in decision-making and communication with patients. Patients deserve respect and dignity when communicating with them. This helps them to comply with treatment and understand their course of illness. In making decisions regarding treatment, it is important to incorporate beneficence, non-maleficence, and consent. Patient education is necessary after patients gain cognitive functions to help them change their behavior and thinking.

What Resources Were Available?

The resources available in this experience include an experienced psychiatric nurse practitioner who supervised my work. There were patients with different mental illnesses, this I came across different diseases in which I was able to learn their clinical symptoms and treatment methods. PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper

What Evidence-Based Practice Did You Use For The Patients?

According to a research study conducted by Spinhoven, et al, (2018), Patients with a depressive mood disorder should be on antidepressant medication and thereafter should enroll in psychotherapy sessions. Cognitive-behavioral therapy has proven effective in patients with depression.

What Would You Do Differently?

I would read and understand the theoretical part of mental illnesses before going for the practical sessions. This would reduce the confusion I encountered in the first few weeks. Additionally, I would create rapport with the patient to source enough information from them.

How are you managing patient flow and volume?  How can you apply your growing skillset to be a social change agent within your community?

There is a system of classifying patients with similar diagnoses and grouping them according to the severity of the symptoms. Additionally, I will create awareness of mental illnesses to allow screening, early diagnoses, and treatment.

 Critical reflection on your growth and development during your practicum experience in a clinical setting as a PMHNP student helps you identify opportunities for improvement in your clinical skills, while also recognizing your strengths and successes.

Use this Journal to reflect on your clinical strengths and opportunities for improvement, the progress you made, and what insights you will carry forward into your next practicum.  PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper

In 450–500 words, address the following:

Learning From Experiences

  • Revisit the goals and objectives from your Practicum Experience Plan. Explain the degree to which you achieved each during the practicum experience.
  • Reflect on the 3 most challenging patients you encountered during the practicum experience. What was most challenging about each?
  • What did you learn from this experience?
  • What resources were available?
  • What evidence-based practice did you use for the patients?
  • What would you do differently?
  • How are you managing patient flow and volume?  How can you apply your growing skillset to be a social change agent within your community?


Baker, L. M. (2019). New Graduate PMHNP Transition to Practice Program.

McDermott-Levy, R., Leffers, J., & Mayaka, J. (2018). Ethical principles and guidelines of global health nursing practice. Nursing Outlook66(5), 473-481.

Spinhoven, P., Klein, N., Kennis, M., Cramer, A. O., Siegle, G., Cuijpers, P., … & Bockting, C. L. (2018). The effects of cognitive-behavior therapy for depression on repetitive negative thinking: A meta-analysis. Behaviour research and therapy106, 71-85.  PMHNP Practicum Experience essay paper

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