Your monthly update in psychiatric-mental health nursing.
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Mental Health Advocacy, Awareness and News
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June, 2018

APNA Member Info

Online Continuing Education
Featured Free CE: Integrating Dialectical Behavior Therapy with the Twelve Steps: A Non-Pharmacologic Approach to Managing Emotion Dysregulation in Early Recovery

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APNA Elections 2018: Vote Now
Cast your vote by August 20 for the APNA Board of Directors and 2019 Nominating Committee. We encourage you to familiarize yourself with the candidates by exploring the Online Election Guide.  This guide covers important information that will help inform your vote, including candidate backgrounds, leadership styles, and contributions to APNA. Click here to learn more and cast your vote.

Register Now for the APNA 32nd Annual Conference
Registration is open for the APNA 32nd Annual Conference this October 24-27 in Columbus, OH. You can earn up to 29.25 continuing education contact hours onsite and up to 90+ additional contact hours online after the conference. This is the opportunity to engage with fellow PMH nurses on topics like responding to mass casualty trauma, pharmacology, reducing stigma, and more. Register by Sept. 10 to save $100. Click here for more details.

APNA Annual Awards Recipients Announced
Congratulations to the recipients of the 2018 APNA Annual Awards! Each of the 10 recipients will be honored at the APNA 32nd Annual Conference in Columbus, OH and in online communications throughout the year. Be sure to look out for profiles of these nurses coming soon. View the recipients here.

Updates for Clinical Psychopharmacology Institute Attendees
Remember to go to and complete your evaluations by July 23rd. Once you complete your evaluations, you can generate your CE certificate. Detailed instructions are available in the CE Info tab of your program book. CPI attendees can access all session handouts, including the newly available handout for Shared Decision Making in Pharmacotherapy Management, by visiting You can also download the NSO & HPSO Discount Form here to get a 10% non-cumulative credit to your base professional liability premium.

Issues & Events

Researchers say they've found strong evidence to suggest that two strains of the human herpes virus -- 6A and 7 may contribute to the development of Alzheimer's disease, reported CNN. The researchers in the new study looked at data on 622 brains from people who had had signs of the disease and 322 from people who did not seem to be affected by it. The brains with Alzheimer's had levels of the herpes virus that were up to twice as high as in people who did not have the disease. "I don't think we can answer whether herpes viruses are a primary cause of Alzheimer's disease. But what's clear is that they're perturbing networks and participating in networks that directly accelerate the brain towards the Alzheimer's topology," Joel Dudley, a geneticist and co-author on the study, said in a statement. Dudley is a member of the ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center. Full Story

A massive undertaking by the Brainstorm Consortium to analyze the genomes of nearly 900,000 individuals has revealed strong genetic overlap between common psychiatric disorders, reported MedScape. These include attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder (MDD), and schizophrenia. Neurologic disorders, such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease, appear more distinct from each other. Full Story

More than a third of American adults are taking prescription drugs, including hormones for contraception, blood pressure medications and medicines for heartburn, that carry a potential risk of depression, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study found that people who took multiple drugs associated with a possible increased risk of depression were also more likely to be depressed, but researchers couldn’t distinguish whether the medications were the cause, reported The Washington Post. Full Story

Research has shown that people with schizophrenia exhibit abnormal electrical activity in the retina. Now a new study finds that a portable device commonly used in optometrists’ offices could allow for a faster diagnosis of the disease, predict relapse and assess symptom severity and treatment effectiveness, reported Full Story

NAMI recently collaborated with researchers at Georgetown University on a report, Mental Health Parity at Risk, that provides comprehensive data showing barriers and gaps in mental health and substance use coverage in the individual insurance market prior to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Click here to access the report.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first generic versions of Suboxone (buprenorphine and naloxone) sublingual film (applied under the tongue) for the treatment of opioid dependence. Full Story

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is now accepting applications for $196 million to treat opioid use disorder through its Targeted Capacity Expansion: Medication Assisted Treatment-Prescription Drug Opioid Addiction grant program. The new funding will expand access to medication-assisted treatment and recovery support services to people with opioid use disorder. Full Story

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the availability of $350 million in new funding to expand access to substance use disorder and mental health services at community health centers across the nation. These funds will support health centers in implementing and advancing evidence-based strategies, including expanded medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services, and are expected to be awarded in September of this year by HHS’s Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). Full Story

The FBI has released a study of pre-attack behaviors of active shooters. The report, covering active shooter incidents in the U.S. between 2000 and 2013, examines specific behaviors that may precede an attack and that might be useful in identifying, assessing, and managing those who may be on a pathway to violence. Click here to access the report.

Call for applications for the American Psychiatric Association’s 2019 Psychiatric Services Achievement Awards are now open. The American Psychiatric Association is looking for programs that have made a significant contribution to the mental health field and provide an innovative model for others to follow. Each award recipient will be presented with a monetary award, a plaque, recognition at the 2019 Institute on Psychiatric Services, and coverage in two APA publications. Click here for more information or here to apply.

Faculty in LSU Health New Orleans schools of Medicine and Public Health and colleagues report that a collaborative effort to build capacity to address behavioral health and promote community resilience after the 2016 Great Flood in Baton Rouge, LA successfully expanded local behavioral health services delivery capacity and that the model may be useful to other disaster-struck communities. The Case Study on the Resilient Baton Rouge (RBR) project was published this month in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, available online. The first objective of the program was to improve the local ability to deliver care addressing post-disaster behavioral health issues beginning with depression in adults. RBR expanded the local mental health infrastructure by supporting the hiring of new staff to provide direct services and training new and existing providers on evidence-based models of care. Full Story


The House of Representatives on June 22 overwhelmingly passed H.R. 6, the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act, reported Section 303 included in the House passed bill would make permanent the authorization for NPs and PAs to provide lifesaving medication assisted treatments (MATs) for patients battling addiction, which was originally granted for a five-year period in the Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Act of 2016. This section also provides a five-year authorization to certified nurse midwives (CNMs), certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs), and clinical nurse specialists (CNSs) to prescribe MATs. Full Story

South Carolina's telepsychiatry program will be expanded to help relieve the psychiatrist shortage with new grants totaling $1.8 million from The Duke Endowment. Approximately $600,000 will be used to help add more advance practice registered nurses for the South Carolina Department of Mental Health’s telepsychiatry program, reported Greenville News. Full Story

The White House has approved an interagency plan to implement President Trump’s executive order supporting Veterans with mental health care and suicide-prevention resources during their transition from uniformed service to civilian life. Signed by the president in January 2018, the executive order directs VA, the Department of Defense (DOD), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to collaborate to provide, to the extent consistent with law, seamless access to mental health care and suicide prevention resources for Veterans, with a focus on the first year after separation from military service. Full Story

The Louisiana Department of Health has agreed to create a new plan for community-based mental health services after the U.S. Department of Justice argued the state's use of nursing homes to treat those with serious mental illness is a Civil Rights violation, reported McKnight's Long-term Care News. Under the agreement Louisiana will create and implement a plan to expand community-based services like mobile crisis, case management, assertive community treatment, and supported housing to meet patient needs in the community. Full Story


Suicide rates have been rising in nearly every state, according to the latest Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In 2016, nearly 45,000 Americans age 10 or older died by suicide. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death and is one of just three leading causes that are on the rise. The report recommends that states take a comprehensive public health approach to suicide prevention and address the range of factors contributing to suicide. This requires coordination and cooperation from every sector of society: government, public health, healthcare, employers, education, media and community organizations. Full Story

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has published an update to its Opioid Overdose Prevention Toolkit, which is designed to help healthcare providers, families and other community members prevent overdose deaths related to opioid use. The toolkit addresses several factors that can lead to an opioid overdose death, from intentional misuse to accidental over-medication, and recommends that health care providers follow guidelines from the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention when considering prescribing opioids. Full Story

The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is Accredited with distinction as a provider of continuing nursing education by the
American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

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