Sample Nursing Essays on Community Mental Health Services

The concept of Community Mental Health

Community mental health refers to the decentralized system that promotes mental health and care and other services for persons with various mental illnesses. The community-based approach substitutes the institutionalized facilities like hospitals that provide expensive inpatient psychological healthcare services. The community-based services are highly responsive to community needs and can accommodate a variety of aspects in patients’ care compared to the central hospitals, which encompasses segregating and grouping patients depending on their conditions (“Community mental health – children, people, used, Definition,” 2019). The community-based approach refers to a system of care that depends on the community to offer primary to persons with mental illnesses rather than a particular hospital. Community psychological health includes services such as supported housing with partial or full supervision, clubhouses, community mental health centers, psychiatric wards in general hospitals, self-help groups, day centers, and local primary care medical services.

Causes of Mental Illness

Mental health professionals identify several factors that contribute to the onset of mental illness. However, the immediate cause of the disorders is difficult to establish, an element that makes them difficult to treat. Numerous studies conducted to determine the origin of the conditions suggest that mental illness is a combination of several factors, including physical, social, psychological, and environmental (Jones, 2018). Many physical reasons have been linked to mental disorders. An example is a biological composition (genetic make-up), which places an individual at risk of developing a disorder. A psychological disorder could also result from trauma to the brain following a head injury. Indulging in substance, alcohol, and drugs also increase the risk of these disorders. The social and environmental factors associated with mental disorders are the element around an individual. These factors encompass the living condition, stress level, social isolation, poverty, and unemployment among others that increase the pressure on a person.

Evidence-Based Treatment for Mental Disorders

Evidence-based practice (EBP) refers to the treatments that have been academically investigated and scientifically proven effective in controlling mental illnesses from numerous observations. This approach entails using research, for instance, though observing patients values and the clinical experiences of the providers, to find evidence that can be used to remedy psychological issues. Evidence-based practices make treatment more effective for mental illnesses as it demands the use of scientifically proven methods based and research(“Evidence-Based Treatment Practices | Dual Diagnosis,” 2019).

Evidence-based treatment comprises of six stages that begin with assessing the patients to establish their clinical needs. The second step is obtaining the relevant research and studies about a mental illness case. After identifying suitable studies, the next step is to evaluate the validity and quality of the information as well as the applicability in the present situation. The doctors can then discuss the finding of the survey with the client while integrating their values, needs, and objectives.  The next step includes the service provider applying professional knowledge to draft an action plan with clear objective agreed upon with the client. Implementing the plan is the final step.

Researchers have identified several useful evidence-based practices for treating various mental disorders. They include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) used to treat addiction and mental health disorders; dialectical behavioral therapy, which is applicable in multiple diseases; motivational interviewing and functional family therapy for managing substance abuse; and assertive interviewing, which entails specialized care for severe mental health disorders.

Role of Mental Health Nurses In the Community

Community mental health nurses form an integral part of the healthcare system and positively impact the lives of thousands of patients every day. The evolution of psychiatry over the last decade spurred a change in the central role of mental health workers to more community-oriented care services. Mental health nursing seeks long term interventions for mental illness patients, performs the role of case managers, supports patients to enable them to live their best lives, and assist the relatives of the patients in coping (“Roles of a Mental Health Nurse | NursingTimesJobs,” 2013). Mental health nurses play a vital role in the management of cases and become the first port of call during referrals to mental health specialists.




“Community mental health – children, people, used, Definition.” (2019). Retrieved from

“Evidence-Based Treatment Practices | Dual Diagnosis.” (2019). Retrieved from

Jones, A. (2018). What causes mental illness? Retrieved from

“Roles of a Mental Health Nurse | NursingTimesJobs.” (2013). Retrieved from