Professional Practice

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Canadian Standards of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing
4th Edition, 2014


The Primary purpose of having standards is to provide direction for professional practice in order to promote competent, safe and ethical service for clients (CNA, 2002a,p.9) Through these standards nurses can articulate to others what is the desired and achievable level of performance in the speciality area and be held accountable. Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing (PMHN) Practice Standards provide a guide for the evaluation of psychiatric and mental health nursing practice within a professional and ethical framework.

  • Standard I: Provides Competent Professional Care Through the Development of a Therapeutic Relationship.
  • Standard II: Performs/Refines Client Assessments Through the Diagnostic and Monitoring Function.
  • Standard III: Administers and Monitors Therapeutic Interventions.
  • Standard IV: Effectively Manages Rapidly Changing Situations.
  • Standard V: Intervenes Through the Teaching-Coaching Function
  • Standard VI: Monitors and Ensures the Quality of Health Care Practices.
  • Standard VII: Practices Within Organizational and Work-Role Structure.

To order a hard copy of our standards of practice you can do so by ordering online or by downloading our order form and mailing the completed form to our office along with payment.


The Canadian Standards of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing Practice were prepared by the Standards Committee of the Canadian Federation of the Mental Health Nurses, an Associate Member of the Canadian Nurses Association

The CFMHN invites your feedback on this document. Please direct any comments and/or suggestions to Thank you in advance for any comments or suggestions that you will provide.

To view an article written about the Standards by Blackwell Publishing in The Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, please click here

Mental Health Now

The Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH) is the national voice for mental health in Canada. Established in 1998, CAMIMH is an alliance of 16 mental health groups comprised of health care providers and organizations that represent people with mental illness, their families and caregivers.

In its role as advocate, CAMIMH believes now is the time for the federal government, in strategic collaboration with the provinces and territories and as part of a negotiated First Ministers’ health accord, to significantly accelerate investment in mental health programs and services. 

To advance the policy discussion, CAMIMH has developed a five-point plan focused on funding, structure, innovation, system performance and health outcomes. While additional resources for mental health are desperately needed, they must be invested where they truly make a difference.

To read the September 2016 document in English, please click here

To read the September 2016 document in French, please click here