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  • 09 January 2019
  • 6 min read

RMN Jobs in the NHS and Private Sectors

  • Chloe Lawrence
    Registered Mental Health Nurse

There are lots of RMN jobs advertised at the moment, in both the public and private sectors. Here's a brief outline of the difference between these employment options.

Mental health nursing jobs are now almost entirely advertised online, and it’s becoming increasingly rare to find nursing recruitment happening in the pages of the local paper.

Both private and public sector recruiters chose to advertise RMN jobs online because they can include more information about the job than they could do in print, and hopefully get a better quantity of relevant applications.

The range of mental health nurse jobs available varies hugely from clinical to care home, from secure inpatient service to community mental health team.

Mental health nurses work within all sectors of society and the opportunities for a rewarding career in mental health nursing are very varied.

Play video: why Chloe loves being a RMN.

Public sector mental health nurse jobs 

Public sector mental health nurses have the opportunity to work in many different areas within the NHS.

In most cases, as long as you don’t take a break between jobs, you can continue achieve unbroken NHS service even when moving between trusts.

The longer you work for the NHS to more benefits you are entitled to, such as increase in pay as you move up the increments within each pay band and increased annual leave allowance.

Local trusts vary in size and services offered, but mental health nurses are employed throughout the NHS.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services or CAMHS offers RMN nurses are wide variety of career options, including inpatient acute services and community nursing.

CAMHS multi-disciplinary teams across the country vary in size, but will often involve mental health nurses, social workers, doctors, psychiatrists and counsellors to name just a few.

Working in psychiatric intensive care unit, or PICU, can also prove to be a rewarding area for a mental health nurse to work in.

This is usually a secure environment for treating patients with mental health conditions that for some reason cannot be managed on an acute ward; this could be due to how severely unwell they are or due to the person being extremely violent or aggressive.

Any treatment or therapy given to a patient in a PICU will often compliment the treatment they already receive in the community, and it can offer a stabilisation period before further treatment is resumed.

Some patients are admitted directly to PICUs whereas others might be admitted to an acute ward and then ‘stepped up’ to a PICU if the acute ward is unable to meet their needs and keep everyone safe for whatever reason.

It is also common for patients to ‘step down’ to an acute ward as they work towards discharge. Older person’s mental health is an area that will increase in the future as the population of the country ages and lives longer.

Mental health services for the over 65’s include inpatient care, respite care, day care and community nursing.

Mental health nursing teams working in this speciality may also receive referrals from a consultant psychiatrist regarding a patient with dementia. Acute wards are the most common kind of inpatient service that you will come across.

This is the kind of ward that most people who require inpatient treatment would be admitted to, unless there is a specialist service available to them, or they require a particular kind of unit - i.e. PICU or CAMHS.

Acute wards are usually segregated by gender and will vary in size depending on the trust be can have anywhere from 15 to 30 inpatient at any one time.

These wards are often extremely fast paced, with the length of stay usually only being a few weeks.

Therefore, there is a high turnover of patients meaning ward dynamics are constantly changing.

All mental health services within the NHS have RMN jobs available for qualified mental health nurses, and thanks to the Agenda for Change unified salary bands, it’s easy to see how any mental health nursing job you are considering applying for measures up on the pay scale.

For an insight into the PICU and CAMHS working environment, check out our blog where we talk to two RMN nurses - RMN nurse jobs.

Private sector mental health nursing jobs

There are lots of private sector healthcare companies that recruit for mental health nurses, and many that offer similar working environments to those in the public sector.

Private healthcare providers and the services they offer vary throughout the country, and depend on the size and speciality of the company.

Some of the larger national companies run care homes that cater for the elderly or those who have dementia, and others offer facilities that support those with learning disabilities or offer respite care.

However, if you chose to work in a clinical environment in the private sector, you can apply for RMN Jobs in various secure settings including hospital wards and psychiatric units.

Private sector nursing jobs are usually advertised online, and can be offered by the employer themselves or by a recruitment agency contracted fill the positions for them.

It can sometimes be the case that even though a position is advertised privately, you may find the day to day working environment is within the public sector.

This will be because the private company that offered the job is contracted to provide staff to the public sector.

The private sector has as many opportunities for RMN nurses as the public sector, and can offer a different approach to the working environment.

An RMN job in the private healthcare sector may come with benefits such as include private health insurance, life assurance, pension and relocation assistance in addition to sickness pay and childcare assistance.

Applying for RMN Jobs

Play video: here are some tips for your mental health nursing interview!

If you’re going to apply for RMN jobs online, as most people would do, then you also need to make sure your nursing career profile is fully up to date.

Nurses.co.uk allows you edit and update your career profile as often as you like, and it’s just 1 simple form to complete before you’re up and running.

Your nursing career profile is then sent along with your application to the recruiter, who will view it in the actual body of the email before they look at your CV.

It should give them a summary of who you are, what experience you’ve had and why you are suitable for the role.

Whether you decide you want to work as a mental health nurse in either the private or public sector, you will need to put together a brilliant application in order to be sure you will considered for the role.

This means writing a great CV, which really shows off all the experience that makes you ideal for the job, and putting together a personal statement that speaks volumes about you as a mental health nurse.

It’s the combination of a great CV and personal statement that will get you the interview. 

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About the author

  • Chloe Lawrence
    Registered Mental Health Nurse

I qualified as a Mental Health Nurse (RMN) in August of 2018 and started as a newly qualified nurse shortly after. On top of nursing I juggle creating content for both my YouTube channel and blog.

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  • Chloe Lawrence
    Registered Mental Health Nurse

About the author

  • Chloe Lawrence
    Registered Mental Health Nurse

I qualified as a Mental Health Nurse (RMN) in August of 2018 and started as a newly qualified nurse shortly after. On top of nursing I juggle creating content for both my YouTube channel and blog.