Academic Master


Nursing, Evidence-Based Practice, And Mental And Behavioral Health

Despite the large number of registered nurses across the globe, there is a shortage of mental health nurses who can adequately and proficiently deliver cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). Of the nurses present, only 10% of them have received adequate training and can offer psychosocial interventions (PSI) for patients suffering from schizophrenia. Schizophrenia refers to a mental condition characterized by failure to recognize what is real as well as abnormal social behavior. Its common signs include confused or unclear thinking, false beliefs, reduced social engagement and emotional expression, lack of motivation, and hearing false voices that others do not understand. The condition has both the psychological and biological aspects.

According to the NSF (the National Service Framework), staff training is essential, considering the majority of mental health nurses have not undergone training in evidence-based interventions. Some mental health nurses have opted to get involved in counseling, which ranges from one-to-one psychotherapy sessions to informal chats. This is the case as many nurses, though not trained in cognitive behavior therapy, may have received training in psychological interventions using client-centered methods, among other ways. In addition, many might have taken post-registration training in various forms of counseling or psychotherapy. Various models of psychotherapy might have either “specific” or “non-specific” effects. Specific effects can be defined as the unique factors found in each model, such as the identification and interpretation of past and present thoughts in psychodynamic psychotherapy. Non-specific effects, on the other hand, are the ordinary factors present in all psychotherapy models despite the theoretical orientation. They include the instillation of hope and understanding, among other rituals correlated with the provision of therapy.

One concept that I have learned, and I believe will be of great help, is that all counseling is evidence-based, even if there exists no direct evidence to help sustain a specific model. Moreover, mental health nurses shouldn’t feel insecure or even intimidated if, by any chance, they have not received training in CBT or DBT. This is because the establishment of a therapeutic relationship between the patient and nurse that helps in changing the existing problems during the therapeutic process can be regarded as evidence-based. All nurses ought to value their practice and should never let anything undermine their ability to assist the patient.



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