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7:00am – 8:00am

No Contact Hours Provided
Sponsoring Company:  Alkermes
Pre-registration is required. Please click here for more information.


8:30am – 6:00pm


1.0 Contact Hours
9:00am – 10:00am

Hard Lessons: A Father, A Son, and A Serious Mental Illness – RN, APRN

Pete EarleyAn award-winning journalist, Pete Earley will speak about the difficulty he experienced in engaging his adult son in mental health treatment, his arrest, his investigation based on ten months as a reporter inside a major jail where he tracked people with serious mental illness through our system, his son’s ultimate recovery, and what he has learned as a parent and advocate visiting 49 states and five foreign countries. He will stress the importance of psychiatric nurses in his son’s recovery.

Keynote Presenter: Pete Earley  |  About Pete Earley


10:00am – 1:00pm


10:00am – 3:00pm

*Attendees can earn up to 4.0 contact hours for time spent reviewing and evaluating the posters on Thursday and Friday.


10:30am – 11:30am

Now is the time to speak with the exciting minds behind this year’s poster presentations. Connect with the presenters, who will be standing by their posters during this period, to ask questions and share your own insights about their work.

Mini Concurrent Sessions
Block 1:  12:00pm – 12:45pm

.75 Contact Hours

Pharmacology 3011: Pharmacology
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Pharmacogenetics Testing in Outpatient Mental Health Clinics – RN, APRN

This presentation introduces how pharmacogenetic testing is being utilized in current practice among mental health clinicians. The participant will leave with an understanding of how these tests are actually being implemented and support precision medicine in the unique context of outpatient mental health practice.  Abstract

Presenter: Tammie Gainey, PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, PMHNP-BC

A Study of the Use of Psychopharmacologic Agents by Acutely Medically Ill Older Adults – RN, APRN

This presentation will discuss a retrospective study of the safety of the use of psychopharmacological agents with acutely medically ill older adults in the general hospital setting. The study findings warn of the overuse of PRN medication of all kinds, and polypharmacy for this population.  Abstract

Presenter: Steven L. Baumann, APRN, NP

3012: Patient Advocacy
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Consent, Mental Illness & Stigma – APRN

Consenting to treatment or research always requires and understanding of what one is consenting to. Determining one's ability to understand should not be made by diagnosis. This presentation discusses concepts of consent for people with serious mental illness (SMI) and the impact to the stigma of mental illness.  Abstract

Presenter: Mary Jane Welch, DNP, APRN, BC, CIP

My Voice Counts! Using Patient and Family Advisory (Partnership) Councils as a Vital Component of the Recovery Model – RN, APRN

The Psychiatric Patient Family Advisory Council (Partnership) Council was formed to promote patient and family involvement on our unit. This presentation will discuss the council’s formation and the many benefits which include and extend beyond the original goal to include advocacy and an improved recovery for the council members themselves.  Abstract

Presenters: Karen A. Federspiel, DNP, MS, RN-BC, GCNS-BC

3013: Staff Education
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Simulation Training to Improve Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Resident Adherence to Veteran Affairs/Department of Defense Clinical Practice Guidelines for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – APRN

This presentation introduces simulation-based training as strategy to improve mental health nurse practitioner adherence to clinical practice guidelines. Simulation training decreases known barriers to clinician guideline adherence: lack of provider awareness, provider time constraints, provider skepticism about the evidence used to support guidelines, and organizational systems change resistance.  Abstract

Presenter: Charleen Angell, DNP, APRN, PMHCNS-BC

3014: Child & Adolescent
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Adolescent Substance-use Patterns Vis-A-Vis Gender, Grade, and Depressive Mood – RN, APRN

This presentation introduces the adolescent’s substance behaviors and how behavioral patterns vary by gender, grades, and depressive symptoms. The finding would give healthcare providers insights into how to prevent substance use in adolescents.  Abstract

Presenters: Lin Lu, BSN, RN; Heeyoung Lee, PhD, PMHNP-BC

Exposure to School Violence, School Protective Factors, and Behavioral Functioning in Urban Adolescents – RN, APRN

This presentation guided by Resiliency Theory illustrates how urban junior and senior high school students are able to maintain physical and emotional well-being in the face of adversity. School connectedness (protective factor) improved behavioral functioning in students exposed to school violence or victimization.  Abstract

Presenter: Linda M. McCash, PhD, ARNP-BC

3015: Research
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Application of Mixture Modeling to Characterize Anorexia Nervosa: Integrating Personality Traits and Eating Disorder Psychopathology and Behaviors – RN, APRN

Mixture modeling was used to determine the best-fitting model of anorexia nervosa (AN) based on eating disorder (ED) psychopathology and personality traits, and evaluate the clinical utility of this model. Clinically relevant characterization of AN provides a better understanding of the heterogeneity among this population.  Abstract

Presenter: Karen M. Jennings, PhD, RN, PMHNP-BC

Mothers' Mental Health After Release from Incarceration – RN

This presentation describes the mental health-related experiences of mothers of minor children after their release from incarceration, including their overall mental health, substance use, and traumatic event processing. Participants will learn how to address the complex mental health issues faced by mothers who have been recently incarcerated.  Abstract

Presenter: Ann E. Stanton, BSN, RN

3016: Graduate Education
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Educator Challenges to Facilitate Nurse Practitioner Student Clinical Placement: Lessons Learned – RN, APRN

The barriers for retention of graduate clinical placements are significant. A simulation class, which also included discussion and role play of real-world expectations, interpersonal collaboration skills and professionalism, was developed to better prepare students for successful placements. Lessons learned in class development and relevant literature will be discussed.  Abstract

Presenters: Kathleen M. McDermott, DNP, RN, MSN, PMHNP BC;  Christine B. Costa DNP, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Empirical Measurement of Psychiatric Performance Competency – APRN

This project describes empirical development of a measure of psychiatric performance competencies for Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Students. The scale contains 25 items with ratings ranging from Novice Skill (1) to Solo Skill (10). The scores were standardized with good reliability by Faculty and Preceptors for each level of clinical training.  Abstract

Presenters: Chase J. Boyer, MA; Michael J. Rice, PhD, APRN, FAAN; Tanya Sorrell, PhD, APN; Alyssa Spurling, MA

3017: Integrated Care
12:00pm – 12:45pm

Physical Activity Preferences and Attitudes of Individuals with Substance Use Disorders: Clinical Applications and Motivating Change – RN, APRN

This presentation will highlight the importance of promoting physical activity among those with substance use disorders. Recent findings related to physical activity preferences and attitudes will be reviewed, as well as basic methods of motivational interviewing to encourage the uptake of physical activity in individuals with substance use disorders.  Abstract

Presenter: Amanda J. Simonton, BSN, RN

Relationship of Physical Health Screenings in Seriously Mentally Ill with Self-Efficacy for Health, Perceived Risk for Health Consequences, and Intended Follow-Up Care   – RN, APRN

Individuals with serious mental illness (SMI) have low health risk screening (HRS) rates. Individuals with SMI were given HRS. Cannabis and self-efficacy for health were significantly related to perceived health risk. Interventions to improve HRS could improve intention to follow-up in medical care.  Abstract

Presenter: Dawn Bos, PMHNP, CNP, MS

1:00pm – 2:30pm

No contact hours provided
Sponsoring Company: Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc

Pre-registration is required. Please click here for more information.


Concurrent Sessions
Block 1:  2:45pm – 3:30pm
.75 Contact Hours

3021: Private Practice Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

A Guide to Finding the Lee Side: Navigating the Unknown Waters of Opening a Private Practice – APRN

This presentation will describe the high and low tides of a successful outpatient mental health practice founded, owned, and operated by nurse practitioners, using the Tidal Model as a theoretical underpinning and a nautical theme as a conceptual guide.  Abstract

Presenters: Ashley Altman, ANP-BC, RN; Ronald Lee Tyson, DNP, DMin, PMHNP-BC


3022: Addictions Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

Using an Experiential Learning Approach to Enhance Nurses Understanding of a Dialectical Behavioral Therapy-Informed Model of Care – RN

This highly interactive presentation allows participants to engage in an innovative and educational learning experience. By using experiential learning concepts, nurses witness the teaching effectiveness and are introduced to the “PLEASED” skill set which assist patients during opiate addiction recovery to promote basic self-care needs therefore reducing emotional vulnerabilities.  Abstract

Presenters: Dawnelle Romero Baca, RN-BC, BSN, MS; Charolette Collins, RN, BSN


3023: Reducing Stigma Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

On a Mission: Taking on Stigma about Mental Health and Illness – RN

This presentation will describe processes used by baccalaureate educators to reduce stigma among students in the undergraduate mental health nursing course. Faculty based the pedagogical revisions on a literature review and student data. Many factors that contribute to stigma are amenable to change in undergraduate education.  Abstract

Presenters: Pamela J. Worrell Carlisle, RN, MA, CHPN, PhD


3024: Special Populations Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

Caring for Youth with Gender Dysphoria: Appropriate Screening, Referrals, and Treatment Modalities to Reduce Health Disparities – RN, APRN

This presentation provides an overview of gender dysphoria including identification, associated risk factors, screening, and appropriate treatment. Also discussed is the spectrum of gender fluidity, including DSM-5 criteria for gender dysphoria. Participants will leave with an understanding of gender dysphoria and the skills to deliver proficient care to this population.  Abstract

Presenter: Brayden Nicole Kameg, BSN, RN, CARN


3025: Research Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

Spiritual Care in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing: What is it? Are we Providing it? How does it fit into the Recovery Model of Care? – RN, APRN

Based on literature reviews and participant survey responses collected at 2017 APNA Annual Conference, this presentation will describe concepts of spirituality/religiosity and spiritual care in PMH nursing. Facilitators and barriers to providing spiritual care will be identified. How spiritual care can be integrated into recovery-oriented practice will be explained.  Abstract

Presenter: Melissa Neathery, PhD, CNE, RN


3026: Education & Practice Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

Behavior Genetics 101 for Psychiatric Mental Health Nurses in 45 Minutes – RN, APRN

This presentation outlines fundamental concepts of behavior genetics specifically selected for PMH nurses. The participant will better understand how genetic variations contribute to individual differences in behaviors and accurately use the genomic terms, such as heritability, allele, and polymorphism.  Abstract

Presenter: Kosuke Niitsu, PhD, APN, PMHNP-BC


3027: Workplace Trauma Track
2:45pm – 3:30pm

Got Trauma? Debriefing in the Workplace – RN, APRN

This presentation highlights the importance of debriefing following traumatic events that occur inside and outside the hospital setting. Types of traumatic events will be discussed and the impact they often have on nurses. A debriefing model will be described. The presentation will conclude with suggestions to cope with traumatic events.  Abstract

Presenter: Francine RB Pingitore, PhD, PMHCNS-BC, CGP


Concurrent Sessions
Block 2:  3:45pm – 4:30pm

  .75 Contact Hours

3031: Private Practice Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Starting a Private Practice: Some Things to Consider – APRN

Private practice can be exciting and rewarding, however taking the initial steps toward that goal can be daunting. The presentation will address key areas that are essential for any PMH APRN who is either considering going into private practice or for the PMH APRN who is new to private practice.  Abstract

Presenter: Allen Novak, MSN, APRN, Rx, PMHCNS-BC


3032: Addictions Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Not Your Dad’s (or Mom’s) Cigarettes Anymore: Assessing Tobacco Use Accurately Supports Successful Treatment – RN, APRN

How can one effectively treat something without all the facts? Continued use of tobacco is regularly and unwittingly supported by nurses who don’t use current information. Attend this session and “unpack” what you think you know about treating tobacco dependence. Learn updated, correct information to effectively treat patients.  Abstract

Presenter: Carol A. Essenmacher, DNP, C-TTS


3033: Reducing Stigma Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Beyond the Straight Jacket: Time for a Reframe in Psychiatric Nursing – RN, APRN

Psychiatric nursing has been called "an endangered species" . We need to attract nurses to our specialty. At this time, the recognition of mental illness has become the topic in the forefront of the nation's attention. Now is the time to learn how to showcase our unique skill set.  Abstract

Presenter: Lisa Burton, PhD, PMHCNS-BC


3034: Special Populations Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Dementia - A Case Study in Differential Diagnosis – RN, APRN

This case study based presentation provides participants with skills to differentiate Lewy Body Dementia from the other major dementias and to identify appropriate treatment strategies. Participants will be engaged in critiquing the consequences of misdiagnosis on the patient, family and caregivers.  Abstract

Presenters: Stella J. Logan, MSN, APRN, PMHCNS-BC, PMHNP-BC; Camille Watson, MSN, APRN, PMHCNS-BC


3035: Research Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Impact of Nurse Practitioner Scope of Practice Regulation on Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Practice – APRN

Presentation will discuss PMHNP practice in five states with different levels of NP autonomy. Data from interviews with stakeholders including regulators, educators, PMHNP clinicians and collaborating psychiatrists reported costs and administrative burdens related to MD supervision in states where this is required.  Abstract

Presenter: Bethany J. Phoenix, PhD, RN, CNS, FAAN


3036: Education & Practice Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Thinking Outside the Box: Are we Ready for Teleprecepting to Expand Training and Practice Venues? – APRN

This presentation introduces a rural county with poor access to psychiatric service, proposing teleprecepting to increase access to PMHNP training for primary care NPs and RNs in rural communities. The interactive presentation will explore pros, cons, risks, solutions, attitudes, and beliefs through panel, debate, and/or audience participation.  Abstract

Presenter: Deborah S. Johnson, DNP, APRN, PMHNP-BC


3037: Workplace Trauma Track
3:45pm – 4:30pm

Protecting the Nursing Workforce through an Aggression Prevention Team (APT) and Behavior Alert (BA) Response – RN, APRN

This presentation introduces a successful process for aggression and violence prevention through the development and implementation of a safety response team. The Aggression Prevention/Behavior Alert process showcases the unique de-escalation skills of mental health professionals. Participants will leave takeaways for use in their own settings.  Abstract

Presenters: Debra Lee Fabert, MSN, RN, BC; Joseph Anderson, MBA


 Interactive Panels
4:45pm – 6:15pm

1.5 Contact Hours 

3041: Council for Mental Health Advocacy
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Meeting the Needs of Psychiatric Nurses - the Annual Council for Mental Health Advocacy Session – RN, APRN

The Council for Mental Health Advocacy will review different aspects of advocacy. Participants will learn about the tools present on the APNA website. There will be a review of active advocacy projects that are currently occurring by members. CMHA will include discussion on what PMH nurses need to advocate.

Presenter: Kathryn E. Brotzge, MSN, PMHNP-BC


3042: Council for Safe Environments
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Council for Safe Environments Interactive Discussion Panel – RN, APRN

CSE leaders will describe current work to improve safety through collaborations, innovations and exploration of best practices. Participants will be encouraged to engage in discussions about safety and violence prevention and to contribute their ideas about educational and practice models that promote caring within the least restrictive setting possible.

Presenters: Diane E. Allen, MN, RN-BC, NEA-BC, FACHE; Richard E. Ray, MS, PMH-BC; Jeannine Loucks, MN, RN-BC, PMH


3043: Forensic Council
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Psychiatric Nurses Unique Agents of Change: Using Research, Collaboration, Education and Innovation to Impact Communities – RN, APRN

PMHNs collaborate with law enforcement and sexual assault nurse examiners to improve current practice, policy and provide education to address barriers to care. Come learn about synergistic technologies that decrease wait times, improve trauma informed interviewing, mental health assessments, and access to care that increase sexual assault kit submission rates.

Presenters: Leslie Miles, DNP, PMHNP-BC; Eben Howard, PhD, MBA, PMHNP-BC, FNP-BC, FACHE


3044: Recovery Council
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Challenges and Successes in Implementing Recovery-Oriented Approaches, Treatments and Programs: APNA Recovery Council Activities – RN, APRN

This interactive presentation will include brief summaries from members of the Recovery Council Steering Committee on recovery principles and practices, data from our series of conference calls planned following postings on the APNA Member Bridge, and the advantages of actively participating in APNA councils and workgroups.

Presenters: Constance Ann Noll, DNP, MA, PMHNP-BC, CRNP; Susan Brammer, PhD, PMHCNS-BC, RN


3045: Research Council
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Toward Quality, Accessible, Culturally-congruent Psychiatric Nursing Care: Leading the Way through Research and Evidence-based Scholarship – RN, APRN

Psychiatric nursing is experiencing critical shortages in diverse, underserved areas of the US where mental health services are sorely needed. It is imperative that psychiatric nursing practice becomes rooted in culturally-congruent research and translation into practice. The purpose of the Interactive Panel is to engage participants in four discovery-oriented modules.

Presenters: Olimpia Paun, PhD, PMHCNS-BC, FGSA; Brandy Mechling, PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC


3046: Military Panel
4:45pm – 6:15pm

Department of Defense (DoD) Behavioral Health Nursing Update: Army, Navy, Air Force, and Veteran's Health Administration Key BH Nursing Leaders as Change Agents – RN, APRN

Articulate challenges inherent in identifying and treating Service Members and Veterans for behavioral health conditions and how the Navy, Air Force, Army, and VA are working together to standardize BH nursing processes across DoD. Each service will additionally provide updates in behavioral health nursing from their particular service.

Presenters: JoEllen M. Schimmels, AN, PMHNP-BC, ANP-BC, DNP; Jean Fisak, NC, USN, PMHCNS-BC


6:30pm – 7:30pm

Don’t miss the chance to connect with psychiatric-mental health nurses from your area of the country! Catching up with your APNA Chapter will provide you with targeted insight into your region’s PMH nursing advancements, needs, and opportunities.


7:45pm – 9:15pm

1.5 Contact Hours

Case Studies & Conundrums: Practical Management of Tardive Dyskinesia for Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurses

Presenter: Dawn M. Vanderhoef, PhD, DNP, PMHNP-BC, FAANP
Sponsoring Company: Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc.
Pre-registration is required. Please click here for more information.


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