The role of the mental health nurse is to foster the health and well-being of individuals experiencing changes in their mental health status.
Approaches to care include: promotion of mental health, prevention and treatment of acute mental illness and the maintenance of optimum health for persons experiencing enduring mental health problems. Mental health nurses engage in therapeutic activities with individuals and their families in a variety of community settings and in acute psychiatric hospitals.
This post-registration Higher Diploma in Mental Health is an intense twelve-month programme leading to registration as a Psychiatric Nurse with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI).
As a Level 8 course, the programme represents a challenging yet rewarding path to becoming a mental health nurse. Regular assessment will help students to keep abreast of the new knowledge, skills and competencies required for success.
This exciting Higher Diploma prepares you to meet the mental health needs of adults and their families in the 21st century. You will learn to engage with those suffering mental distress or illness, as well as their families, in a positive and collaborative way, empowering them to cope and recover.
You will experience a variety of teaching methods as you establish a strong foundation in mental health nursing practice. These include role-play, small group discussions, workshop simulations and lectures. You will undertake clinical and theory modules, including:
Clinical Placement modules x 6 will be provided over the course of 36 weeks duration. In order to meet the NMBI standards and regulations a variety of assessment modes will be used to regularly and continuously to assess students throughout the year.
Clinical learning opportunities help you to apply theory to practice and to develop the required competencies for your Higher Diploma. Clinical placements are facilitated by our partner mental health services in Dublin, Wicklow and Kildare areas:
(Please note, as part of NMBI requirements for registration, clinical placements over the duration of the programme will be located throughout the greater Dublin/Wicklow/Kildare region, regardless your sponsoring area).
Qualifying as a mental health nurse is the beginning of an exciting and rewarding career, as it opens up opportunities for working in a variety of settings. Due to the evolving role of mental health nursing in modern healthcare systems, many nurses now choose to specialise in areas such as addiction, forensics and child mental health. You can also pursue further specialist qualifications through graduate diplomas, master’s degree and PhD degrees.
We have seven overall programme outcomes which will be the focus thoughout the course. The aim is that the nursing graduates of the Higher Diploma in Mental Health will:
In line with Psychiatric Nurse Post-Registration Programme Standards and Requirements (An Bord Altranais, 2007) there are 12 weeks of Theory, 36 weeks of Clinical Practice (comprising 22 weeks of core mental health placements and 14 weeks of specialty placements) and 4 weeks Annual Leave.
Details of the organisation of Theoretical, Clinical and Annual Leave components will be provided near to the date of commencement of the programme. Students are required to attend all theoretical and clinical modules and to take annual leave as scheduled.
Note that this programme is available through a sponsoring mental health service and is not open to individual application. You will receive UCD registration information when you accept a place on the programme. You must be fully registered with UCD before you can commence the programme. Please note that there is a non-refundable administration fee of €50.00 payable to UCD. Once you have accepted a place on the programme, university fees are paid on your behalf by the HSE. As a student mental health nurse you are a paid employee of the HSE. HSE sponsorship details will be available on the HSE website with Higher Diploma in Mental Health Nursing application documents.