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Memorable, monumental, moving: APNA 36th Annual Conference

Memorable, monumental, moving: APNA 36th Annual Conference

November 2022

The APNA 36th Annual Conference on October 19-22 was a fantastic chance to soak up the latest advancements and discoveries in psychiatric-mental health nursing and connect with colleagues! This largest U.S. event for PMH nurses was APNAs first-ever hybrid Annual Conference — with more than 2,000 either attending in person at the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center in warm and sunny Long Beach, California or joining via virtual livestream.

And no matter how attendees took part, they were able to earn up to 25.75 contact hours for attending and evaluating sessions and poster presentations during the event. Those who attended are able to earn up to 90+ more contact hours at no additional cost with session recordings. Presentation topics include human trafficking; structural determinants of health; implicit bias; vaping prevention; educational interventions; and teaching modalities.

“I learned a lot from the different presentations,” one attendee shared. “I realized the importance of being part of the APNA [is it] opens my mind to a whole new world of resources and like-minded individuals who seek new information to provide excellent, evidence-based care for our patients.”

Recordings presentations from the APNA 36th Annual Conference will soon be available in the APNA eLearning Center. Attendees will have access to these on-demand sessions and materials for up to a year.

The conference featured a lot of bright lights: The inaugural recipients of the APNA Memorial Scholarship were recognized, as well as the 30 students awarded the APNA Board of Directors Student Scholarships. Also recognized were the recipients of the APNA Annual Awards, including the the 2022 APNA Psychiatric Nurse of the Year Joyce Shea and Distinguished Service award recipient Gail Stern. All of these awardees are an inspiration for what they have done and what they will do as psychiatric-mental health nurses.

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The conference kicked into high gear on Thursday, October 20 with the President’s Address from Leslie Oleck. She reminded attendees: “We distribute hope. This is what we do.” A full day of informative sessions ended with attendees stoked to attend the the Under the Sea! reception. At this ocean-themed event, attendees took selfies with a shark, played games, and danced with jellyfish and friends made and found at the conference. A Perfect 10!

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Friday, October 21 started with the detailed and thought-provoking Keynote presentation from Dr. David Williams, How Racism, Socioeconomic Status, & Stress Affect Mental Health: And What We Can Do About It. From an attendee: “This was such a powerful presentation and was SO very important. It was very enlightening. I discussed with some of my peers regarding the issues discussed in this presentation regarding racial disparities.”

Presenters joined their posters that morning, and answered questions and shared about their work. The day wrapped with attendees building local and state connections with colleagues at in-person chapter meetings.

The conference wound down on Saturday, October 22 with Council Meetings and another morning of discovery through informational and interesting sessions.

The APNA 36th Annual Conference was rewarding and great conference — just ask the attendees!

  • “I left the conference with a renewed sense of hope for the PMH nursing profession. I loved connecting with the old guard like myself and hearing of the wide variety of experiences through the years. What gave me the most pride and hope for our future was the number of younger professionals who are so enthusiastic and passionate about PMH nursing. I feel rejuvenated and eager to share my experience.”
  • “I never fully believed that attendees feel invigorated after attending a conference, but this conference changed that opinion. It was a refresher that I needed professionally.
See you next year at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida on October 4-7 for the APNA 37th Annual Conference! Considering your own presentation? The Call for Abstracts opens in January, so start brainstorming and finding your collaborators now!


About APNA: The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is a national professional membership organization committed to the practice of psychiatric-mental health nursing and wellness promotion, prevention of mental health problems, and the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disorders. APNA’s membership is inclusive of all psychiatric-mental health registered nurses including associate degree, baccalaureate, advanced practice (comprised of clinical nurse specialists and psychiatric nurse practitioners), and nurse scientists and academicians (PhD). APNA serves as a resource for psychiatric-mental health nurses to engage in networking, education, and the dissemination of evidence. The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.