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APNA Position Papers

The American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA) develops position papers (white papers) in response to psychiatric-mental health nursing needs that are identified by APNA members in conjunction with the APNA Board of Directors. Position papers advance the profession of psychiatric-mental health nursing by discussing topics of vital interest to the profession and advocating for solutions or potential paths to address concerns. They are concise, address both mainstream and minority opinions, and are based on the best available evidence. Members with subject matter expertise are appointed by the board to draft the position papers, which are then reviewed and approved by the board and made available for member comment. After incorporating any member feedback, final position papers are approved by the board and published on the APNA website. Papers are reviewed after three years by the APNA Board of Directors to ensure that they are current and relevant, and papers are updated or sunset as needed. Position Paper Process & Guidelines


Whole Health Begins with Mental Health

Approved March 2017; Revised April 2020; Revised February 2023

Adoption of Screening, Brief Intervention, & Referral to Treatment (SBIRT)

Approved September 2012; Revised June 2020
SBIRT Pocket Card for Nurses

APRNs Prescribing Buprenorphine and other Medications for Opioid Use Disorder (MOUD)

Approved July 2013; Revised June 2020, Revised February 2024
APNA MSUD Training

Care of Detainees & Prisoners

Approved March 2016; Reviewed February 2020; Reviewed June 2022

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Approved June 2024

Electroconvulsive Therapy

Approved January 2011; Revised July 2021

The Future of Nursing 2020-2030: Charting a Path to Achieve Health Equity

Approved November 2021; Reviewed February 2024

Global Strategic Priorities for Nursing

Approved April 11, 2023

Integrated Care

Approved January 10, 2023

Ketamine Infusion Therapy for Psychiatric Disorders

Approved June 2019; Revised June 2023
Ketamine Treatment Considerations Checklist

Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education Recommendations

Approved February 2011; Reviewed February 2020; Reviewed February 2022; Updated February 2023
LACE Information & Resources

Nurse Assessment & Management of Suicide Risk

Approved February 2015; Revised December 2020; Revised and approved May 2022
Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Essential Competencies for Assessment & Management of Individuals at Risk for Suicide

Psychiatric-Mental Health Advanced Practice Nurses

Approved October 2010; Reviewed February 2020; Revised June 2022

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses’ Role in Primary Care

Approved February 2013; Revised July 2020; Revised June 2022

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing’s Role in Tobacco Treatment

Approved October 2008; Revised July 2020; Revised February 2023
Nursing Competencies for Treating Tobacco Use Disorders

Psychotherapy and the Psychiatric-Mental Health Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Role

Approved December 2021

Scope & Standards of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing

Approved June 2014; Reviewed February 2020; Updated February 2023
Scope & Standards Publication

Staffing Inpatient Psychiatric Units

Approved by the APNA Board of Directors: September 13, 2011
Updated February 2023

State of the World’s Nursing

Approved April 2020; Reviewed February 2024

The Use of Seclusion & Restraint

Approved 2000; Revised May 2007; Revised April 2014; Revised March 2018; Revised February 2022
APNA Standards of Practice: Seclusion & Restraint

Violence Prevention

Approved March 2017; Revised November 2020, April 2022
Violence Prevention Resources