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Digital Seminar

Practical Strategies for Better Results with Psychiatric Medications: Do’s and Don’ts for Mental Health Counselors

Susan Marie, PhD, PMHNP, CARN-AP
6 Hours 22 Minutes
May 27, 2021
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Digital Seminar
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Clients often don’t get the results they could from mental health medications and suffer unnecessarily. And even be at greater risk for suicide.

Tailored specifically for the mental health clinician, this seminar provides what you need to help your client get more benefit – and less downside – from taking medications.

Susan Marie, PMHNP, PhD, CARN-AP, expert clinician, prescriber and presenter, will give you practical, evidence-based strategies to use immediately in your practice. This is the “toolbox” you’ll turn to time and again. You will learn critical information about medications – but far more useful information than you might learn in typical “Psychopharm” trainings (or Dr. Google!)

The unique focus of this seminar is that it increases your skills to help clients with the vulnerable, and challenging, process of choosing to take and then whether to stay on psychiatric medications, and then when and how to stop them.

For example, if your client is benefiting some from their antidepressant, but hates the hassle, what do you do? And say, or not say? And what if they have suicidal thoughts?

From this seminar, you’ll gain the knowledge and skills to effectively:

  • determine potentially dangerous side effects
  • recognize threats to self-image and other stigma triggered by psychiatric medication
  • understand the interaction of medication and suicidality
  • increase client motivation to consider medication, and stay on medication that is working
  • communicate the dangers of treating to response without remission.

And that’s only the beginning.

You’ll also get new language options for your toolbox for asking the critical, but difficult questions and for alerting clients to potential dangers. Plus, tools for measuring progress that are client friendly and increase treatment results, and even includes do’s and don’t strategies for interacting with prescribing colleagues.

Purchase today!


- PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This online program is worth 6.5 hours CPD for points calculation by your association.



Susan Marie, PhD, PMHNP, CARN-AP's Profile

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Clinical Associate Professor

Susan Marie, PhD, PMHNP, CARN-AP, a licensed psychiatric nurse practitioner with full independent prescriptive practice and certification in addictions, brings to you over 30 years of clinical experience with highly vulnerable clients with suicidality, co-occurring addiction, homelessness, serious mental illnesses, traumatic brain injuries, and persistent pain conditions. She is noted for her “pearls and pitfalls” of psychopharmacology.  Her passions are radical respect for people with serious mental illnesses & addictions, excellence in psychopharmacology, and integrating psychotherapeutic interventions for clients with PTSD, addictions and chronic pain.

Dr. Marie is Senior Clinical Director for Behavioral Health at Old Town Clinic, Central City Concern and Associate Professor at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Oregon.  She teaches nationally on psychopharmacology as well as suicide assessment and intervention. 


Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Susan Marie is an Associate Professor for Oregon Health & Science University. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Susan Marie has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.


  1. Integrate at least five strategies you can use for better results for your clients with medication.
  2. Use effective language with clients to dispel fear and stigma, and increase motivation to consider medication.
  3. Practice discussing and educating clients regarding the specific adverse effects that may exist for your client’s medication.
  4. Integrate at least 5 additional medication specific strategies which further increase results.
  5. Calculate the dangers of clients settling for response in depression treatment.
  6. Determine which medications significantly decrease current, and prevent future suicidality.
  7. Determine when your client may be at risk for harm from medication adverse effects, and provide information to your client how to minimize or avoid harm.
  8. Determine clinical concerns, issues, and how to avoid decompensation when clients want to discontinue medication.


10 Strategies to Improve Results

  • Risks/Ethics for Non-Prescribers regarding Psychiatric Medications
  • Additional Strategies for specific types of medications
  • Adapting your toolbox to address specific populations
  • Practical application of strategies using actual case studies

Interactive Skill Building and Case Examples

  • Anxiety & PTSD medications
  • Most effective medications
  • Specific adverse effects & how to ask to elicit full information
  • Dosing dangers
  • Getting “into the weeds” when benzodiazepines are problematic
  • Special populations: adolescents, older adults, substance use disorder comorbidity

Interactive Skill Building and Case Examples

  • Depression medications
  • Most effective medications
  • Response vs. remission
  • Specific adverse effects & how to ask
  • Suicidality
  • Special populations: adolescents, older adults, substance use disorder comorbidity
  • When & how to stop

Interactive Skill Building and Case Examples

  • Bipolar medications
  • Most effective medications
  • Specific adverse effects & how to ask, when they are dangerous
  • Special populations: adolescents, older adults & substance use disorder comorbidity
  • Empowering clients and preventing hospitalization

Interactive Skill Building and Case Examples

  • Risks/limitations & evidence-base
  • The current literature and knowledge to date
  • The literature on medications for adolescents and its more limited nature

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychotherapists
  • Case Managers
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Clinical Nurse Specialists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Pharmacists
  • Other Mental Health & Health Care Professionals

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