2016 APNA President's Report

Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the APNA Board of Directors I am pleased to present the 2016 American Psychiatric Nurses Association Annual Activity President's Report. This report provides a snapshot of the period from October 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016. It has been an exciting year and this report is full of examples of what can be achieved when we as psychiatric-mental health nurses unleash our inner leaders.

I am happy to report that we have enjoyed sound membership growth and retention – we now have more than 11,000 members! Please see APNA Secretary Joyce Shea’s report for details on membership and more. We have also enjoyed a strong financial year - APNA Treasurer Susan Dawson’s report provides you with more information.

As stated in our bylaws, APNA is “organized exclusively for charitable, educational, and scientific purposes.” Our activities are guided by a strategic direction created and updated by our Board of Directors. The Board continually assesses APNA’s progress against the plan’s four goals:

  • Goal A. APNA will be the indispensable resource for member networking, leadership, and professional development.
  • Goal B. APNA will be the leader in creating strategic alliances with key stakeholders.
  • Goal C. APNA will be recognized as the expert voice for psychiatric-mental health nursing to stakeholders.
  • Goal D. APNA will be the leader in integrating research, practice, and education to address pressing mental health policy issues that affect psychiatric-mental health nursing and the population served.

The remainder of this report will provide a glimpse of how we have progressed towards achieving these goals. Please see the reports in the appendix for a thorough review.

All of the projects and initiatives in this report would not be possible without you, our members who give their time to help APNA support and advance psychiatric-mental health nursing.

Through Our Education & Programs
Member-developed programs such as online education and conferences provide valuable continuing education for professional development and also opportunities for members to network, gain exposure, and advance mental health. For example:

  • The three webinars, Effective Treatments for Opioid Use Disorders: Educating and Empowering Nurses during an Epidemic, were developed by members of the APNA Addictions Council for all RNs and APRNs. Offered for free with contact hours, more than 3,000 nurses have participated so far. We have partnered with our fellow nursing organizations to help spread the word.
  • The first class of facilitators of the Competency-Based Training for Suicide Prevention completed their training this June. They are now authorized to deliver the APNA Competency-Based training for Suicide Prevention to their institutions and communities.
  • The APNA eLearning Center continues to expand, with 280 sessions (26 of which are free) and constant updates to bring current evidence-based knowledge to our members.
  • The APNA Transitions in Practice Certificate Program is providing foundational knowledge to PMH-RNs. Since the program was released, a total of 6,795 contact hours have been awarded.
  • A February 2016 Council Retreat served as an orientation program for new and existing leaders.
  • The APNA Board of Directors Scholarship was awarded to 30 students recommended by the APNA Awards & Recognition Committee. This program identifies rising psychiatric-mental health nursing leaders and provides them membership, conference attendance, and more.
  • The APNA Research Grant Review Committee selected Nicholas Guenzel to receive funding for his research proposal, Relationships between Historical Trauma and Mental Health among Adult Urban American Indians.
  • 10 psychiatric-mental health nurses and a chapter were selected by the APNA Awards & Recognition Committee to be honored with APNA Annual Awards, which recognize excellence in our profession.
  • This year the APNA Annual Conference schedule integrates daily dedicated networking times to further enhance the valuable interactions that occur at face-to-face events.


Through Our Chapters, Councils, & Institutes

Highlights of council and chapter activities this year include:

  • In addition to developing the Effective Treatments for Opioid Use Disorders webinars, the Addictions Council put together an Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) Summary of the Evidence will be disseminated to membership soon.
  • The APRN Council released an interactive online map which summarizes PMH-APRN scope of practice by state; ‘About PMH-APRNs’ brochures to inform the public and students, and an Annual Conference Advanced Practice Psychotherapy Full Day Course to address how psychotherapy can be utilized regardless of setting constraints.
  • The Education Council created the Undergraduate Education Toolkit: Defining and Using Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Skills in Undergraduate Nursing to help educators integrate mental health content into their curricula. APNA will host a webinar with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing to deliver the toolkit to nursing faculty.
  • The Institute for Safe Environments, via a Violence Prevention Task Force, produced a timely APNA Position Paper on Violence Prevention and accompanying Toolbox. These resources speak to the vital role that psychiatric-mental health nurses play in violence prevention in their communities.
  • This year APNA Chapters offered a total of 58 hours of CNE through conferences, which resulted in more than 3900 contact hours earned.
  • Through a grant from the Hogg and Meadows Foundations, nurses in Texas are receiving training to disseminate APNA’s Acute Care Psychiatric Mental-Health Nurses: Preparing for Recovery-Oriented Practice to professionals across the state looking to integrate recovery-oriented practices into the care they provide.


Through Our Relationships

Members ensured that psychiatric-mental health nurses were 'at the table' by representing APNA at many events held by nursing and mental health organizations. See the full list in the Appendix here.

  • APNA continues Premiere Organizational Affiliate status with American Nurses Association.
  • APNA continues organizational participation with Nursing Organizations Alliance, Nursing Community, Joining Forces Initiative, Mental Health Liaison Group, and the SAMHSA Voice Awards.
  • APNA’s participation in White House initiative to address opioid use includes our three webinars, the recording of which was attended by stakeholders from the Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses, American Association of Colleges of Nursing, American Nurses Association, American Organization of Nurse Executives, International Society on Addictions Nursing, and the Oncology Nursing Society.
  • Collaboration is underway with Medical/Surgical and Critical Care Nursing Associations to adapt the current APNA Competency Based Training for Suicide Prevention into a one-hour training for acute care nurses.
  • The Tobacco Dependence Branch of the APNA Addictions Council will be hosting a webinar with the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center on APNA’s work in smoking cessation.
  • APNA has joined the Providers’ Clinical Support System for Medication Assisted Treatment (PCSS- MAT) and Providers’ Clinical Support System for Opioid Therapies (PCSS-O) Steering Committees in light of the recent passage of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016.

All of the projects and initiatives in this report would not be possible without you, our members who give their time to help APNA support and advance psychiatric-mental health nursing. I am humbled by the knowledge, talent, and creativeness of our organization, especially when we work together. Remember: They cannot do health care without us, so let’s continue to chart our course and invite others to the table. Thank you all for being the leaders! It has been my honor serve as your APNA President.

Respectfully Submitted,


AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC NURSES ASSOCIATION and APNA-Logoare registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as trademarks of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association.
The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited with distinction as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.