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With California facing an urgent and growing shortage of mental health professionals, the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis collaborated with the UCSF and UCLA Schools of Nursing to launch a new remote-access training that will prepare 300 psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (PMHNPs) over five years.

The first remote-learning, postmaster’s certificate of its kind in California, this training launches at a time when a shortfall in mental health providers continues to grow across California. Over 50% of people with mental illness in the state are not receiving psychiatric care, and many communities in the San Joaquin Valley and Inland Empire have only half as many psychiatrists as other parts of the state.

This PMHNP postmaster’s certificate training is a 12-month hybrid that combines remote-access education with three in-person sessions and regional clinical training across California. Students can stay in their communities to complete their training.

Upon completion of this training, students will sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center national certification to become a PMHNP.

Schedule and application deadline

The application cycle for the online PMHNP postmaster’s certificate program is currently closed. The program received high interest from many well qualified applicants for its inaugural class and increased admissions is planned for the January 2022 class. Eligible applicants, including those who did not receive admission for January 2021, are strongly encouraged to apply during the next application cycle. Applications for January 2022 entry open Nov. 1 and close March 1, 2021.

Admissions requirements

Who can apply

  • Nurse practitioners
  • Clinical nurse specialists
  • Certified nurse midwives

Required qualifications

  • N.P. licensure in California. Nursing license must be recognized as valid for practice within the state of California during the complete course of study.
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions, including any programs in which you are currently enrolled
  • Goal statement
  • Minimum of three letters of recommendation
  • Resume or C.V.
  • English proficiency for non-native speakers (minimum TOEFL score of 92, minimum ILTS score of 7)

Required prerequisite coursework

  • Advanced (Lifespan) Physical Health Assessment
  • Advanced Pharmacology
  • Advanced Pathophysiology
  • Health Promotion/Disease Prevention
  • Nutrition (for non-N.P.s)

The following external institutions offer non-matriculated courses:

Visit the UCSF website for more details »