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5 careers for mental health nursing graduates

A degree in mental health nursing can help you touch the lives of some of the most vulnerable individuals in society.

Here are some of the roles you could find yourself in.

Some of these options may require further education and work experience.

Community Mental Health Nurse
Make a difference to lives in the community.

In this role, you'll work with a team of specialists to build strong relationships with patients. You could find yourself:

▪️ working alongside psychiatrists, occupational therapists, and social workers
▪️ assessing a patient's mental, physical, and social state
▪️ showing empathy and clinical knowledge to support patients
▪️ working in remote locations where there is no access to mental health facilities
▪️ educating patients' families and the wider community about mental health

You could progress to senior positions with further professional training.

Ward Manager
Oversee a hospital ward and monitor patient care.

Ward managers are nursing experts with leadership and management skills. As a ward manager, you could be responsible for:

▪️ both small, specialised units and large, busy wards
▪️ ensuring patients receive a high standard of care
▪️ working with other healthcare providers to create patient care plans
▪️ supervising nursing staff
▪️ recruitment, staff development, budgets and resource management
▪️ ensuring policies such as health and safety and infection control are followed
▪️ quality improvement through audits and inspections
▪️ crisis management

An experienced registered nurse with leadership skills can progress to ward manager.

Custody Nurse Practitioner
Offer care to people in police detention.

As a custody nurse practitioner (CNP), you'll work with detainees in custody. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ assessing detainees for fitness for detention, interview, release, or transfer
▪️ conducting mental health assessments
▪️ assessing and administering medications
▪️ creating accurate clinical and police records
▪️ collecting forensic samples to assist the police
▪️ working in prisons and police stations

Resilience and the ability to handle challenging situations with confidence, authority, compassion and empathy will help you in this role.

Experience of nursing, mental healthcare, community nursing and prison work could help you become a custody nurse. You could then progress to being a supervising officer or custodial manager.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapist (CBT)
Assess and treat clients with mental health difficulties.

CBT is a form of counselling which helps people achieve and maintain good mental health. As a cognitive behavioural therapist, you'll assess and help clients achieve their goals. Your role will be to listen, teach, and encourage. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ building relationships with people from a range of backgrounds
▪️ applying listening skills, patience, and excellent communication skills in a non-judgemental manner
▪️ assessing individuals and liaising with families
▪️ identifying and managing mental health conditions
▪️ working with individuals and groups and using your knowledge of psychology to create action plans for clients
▪️ keeping records and following data protection and confidentiality rules
working in GP practices, healthcare centres or other community venues

With experience you could set up your own practice or specialise in teaching or research.

Addiction Practitioner
Work with service users to combat their addictions.

As an addiction practitioner, you'll support service users through their treatment and recovery journey. You'll assess clients' needs and arrange recovery plans and onward referral. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ listening and reading body language
▪️ being calm under pressure and having a persuasive manner
▪️ providing specialist addiction treatment, including harm reduction and risk management
▪️ controlling substance misuse and other addiction problems
▪️ providing counselling and helping with rehabilitation
▪️ dealing with the causes of substance misuse
▪️ working in clinics, hospitals, and prisons providing treatment alongside psychologists and psychiatrists

You could go on to be a service operations manager or train to deliver specialist talking therapies.

Which role are you most interested in? :smile:
Original post by University of Bradford
A degree in mental health nursing can help you touch the lives of some of the most vulnerable individuals in society.

Here are some of the roles you could find yourself in.

Some of these options may require further education and work experience.

Community Mental Health Nurse
Make a difference to lives in the community.

In this role, you'll work with a team of specialists to build strong relationships with patients. You could find yourself:

▪️ working alongside psychiatrists, occupational therapists, and social workers
▪️ assessing a patient's mental, physical, and social state
▪️ showing empathy and clinical knowledge to support patients
▪️ working in remote locations where there is no access to mental health facilities
▪️ educating patients' families and the wider community about mental health

You could progress to senior positions with further professional training.

Ward Manager
Oversee a hospital ward and monitor patient care.

Ward managers are nursing experts with leadership and management skills. As a ward manager, you could be responsible for:

▪️ both small, specialised units and large, busy wards
▪️ ensuring patients receive a high standard of care
▪️ working with other healthcare providers to create patient care plans
▪️ supervising nursing staff
▪️ recruitment, staff development, budgets and resource management
▪️ ensuring policies such as health and safety and infection control are followed
▪️ quality improvement through audits and inspections
▪️ crisis management

An experienced registered nurse with leadership skills can progress to ward manager.

Custody Nurse Practitioner
Offer care to people in police detention.

As a custody nurse practitioner (CNP), you'll work with detainees in custody. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ assessing detainees for fitness for detention, interview, release, or transfer
▪️ conducting mental health assessments
▪️ assessing and administering medications
▪️ creating accurate clinical and police records
▪️ collecting forensic samples to assist the police
▪️ working in prisons and police stations

Resilience and the ability to handle challenging situations with confidence, authority, compassion and empathy will help you in this role.

Experience of nursing, mental healthcare, community nursing and prison work could help you become a custody nurse. You could then progress to being a supervising officer or custodial manager.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapist (CBT)
Assess and treat clients with mental health difficulties.

CBT is a form of counselling which helps people achieve and maintain good mental health. As a cognitive behavioural therapist, you'll assess and help clients achieve their goals. Your role will be to listen, teach, and encourage. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ building relationships with people from a range of backgrounds
▪️ applying listening skills, patience, and excellent communication skills in a non-judgemental manner
▪️ assessing individuals and liaising with families
▪️ identifying and managing mental health conditions
▪️ working with individuals and groups and using your knowledge of psychology to create action plans for clients
▪️ keeping records and following data protection and confidentiality rules
working in GP practices, healthcare centres or other community venues

With experience you could set up your own practice or specialise in teaching or research.

Addiction Practitioner
Work with service users to combat their addictions.

As an addiction practitioner, you'll support service users through their treatment and recovery journey. You'll assess clients' needs and arrange recovery plans and onward referral. Your responsibilities could include:

▪️ listening and reading body language
▪️ being calm under pressure and having a persuasive manner
▪️ providing specialist addiction treatment, including harm reduction and risk management
▪️ controlling substance misuse and other addiction problems
▪️ providing counselling and helping with rehabilitation
▪️ dealing with the causes of substance misuse
▪️ working in clinics, hospitals, and prisons providing treatment alongside psychologists and psychiatrists

You could go on to be a service operations manager or train to deliver specialist talking therapies.

Which role are you most interested in? :smile:


are these careers all something you can get into with a mental health nursing degree or do you need extra training/qualifications
Original post by ladyof_neptune9
are these careers all something you can get into with a mental health nursing degree or do you need extra training/qualifications


Hi there! Some of these options may require further education and work experience :smile:

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