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WGU Indiana Launches Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program

The new online, competency-based degree aims to address a critical shortage in mental health providers in Indiana and beyond.

Mar 11, 2022

INDIANAPOLIS — Today, the College of Health Professions at WGU Indiana announces the launch of a Master’s of Science in Nursing, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) Degree to help address a critical shortage of mental health providers throughout the state. Nearly one in five U.S. adults suffer from mental, behavioral or emotional disorders, and the demand for effective mental healthcare is outpacing the availability of qualified mental healthcare providers across the country.

“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.”

According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, only 2.9% of the 192,000 credentialed nurse practitioners in the U.S. work in the psychiatric/mental health specialty area. But studies have shown that up to 96% of counties in the U.S. have unmet needs for mental health professions, with the most pronounced shortage being in rural areas.

This new masters degree offering expands access to Hoosiers who wish to advance their careers into this exciting area of clinical practice, helps satisfy the increasing demand for mental health care in Indiana and provides advanced mental health care to individuals and families in local communities.

The new Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner degree is now available to students in Indiana. To learn more about the program details and apply, visit

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