Managing acute mental health-related presentations: equipping all nurses | Australian College of Nursing

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Managing acute mental health-related presentations: equipping all nurses

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About the CPD short course

This short course is conducted over two days and is equivalent to 14 continuing professional development (CPD) hours. Please note that this program is subject to change.

Who should attend?

This two day short course provides foundational knowledge in providing mental health focused care, for nurses who come across patients with mental health presentations in clinical areas. Nurses working in acute care sectors, including the emergency departments, general medical and surgical wards and in the community, who need to manage challenging behaviours will greatly benefit from this short course. 

Date and location

We are currently finalising our calendar of CPD short courses for the first half of 2017. If you would like to be informed when dates are announced, you can register for email notifications

If you would like to tell us which courses you would like to see in your area, please click here to complete a short survey.


RN member $327.00RN non-member $385.00
EN member $269.00EN non-member $327.00

Key learning outcomes

On completion participants will be better able to:

  • discuss the signs and symptoms of common mental health conditions
  • demonstrate the nursing management of patients with mental health conditions
  • integrate basic knowledge of psychotropic medications into nursing practice
  • practise risk assessment
  • identify relevant aspects of the Mental Health Act
  • demonstrate effective communication skills with the mental health team and patients who have mental issues.

Program outline

Day 1


Registration and welcome 


Recognising major mental disorders

  • psychosis 
  • mood disorders
  • anxiety
  • personality disorders




Dementia versus delirium 


Afternoon tea


The role of psychotropic medications


End of Day 1

Day 2


Assessment processes

  • mental state examination
  • risk assessment




Legal issues

  • Mental Health Act
  • Duty of Care
  • Guardianship Act


Afternoon tea


Challenging behaviours 

  • aggression management
  • medically unexplained symptoms/sick roles


End of day 2