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WGU launches mental health nurse practitioner degree

(photo courtesy of WGU Indiana)

INDIANAPOLIS (Inside INdiana Business) – WGU Indiana is offering a new online master’s degree through its College of Health Professions. WGU says the Master’s of Science in Nursing, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner degree will help address a critical shortage of mental health providers throughout the state.

The school cites data from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners that shows only 2.9% of the 192,000 credentialed nurse practitioners in the U.S. work in the psychiatric or mental health specialty area. Studies also show that up to 96% of counties in the U.S. have unmet needs for mental health professions, especially in rural areas.

“Maintaining and growing our healthcare workforce, including mental health providers, is fundamental to providing robust, quality care to patients across Indiana,” said Alison Bell, WGU Indiana Chancellor and Regional Vice President at WGU. “To do this, WGU is expanding the accessible, affordable and flexible education pathways available for nurses to advance their careers. In doing so, we also create greater access to much needed mental health services and reduce the stigma in seeking help when needed.”

WGU says the demand for mental healthcare is outpacing the availability of qualified mental healthcare providers across the country. The degree program expands access to Hoosiers who wish to advance their careers within the mental healthcare field.

The school says the degree is now available to students in Indiana. You can learn more about the program and apply by clicking here.