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BENNETTSVILLE, S.C. – CareSouth Carolina’s Lauren Worsham MSN, APRN, CPNP-PC, PMHS,, has earned the national added qualifications credential of Pediatric Primary Care Mental Health Specialist (PMHS®) after successfully passing the rigorous PMHS exam from the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board. To date, there are fewer than 400 PMHS experts in the United States.
Worsham, who practices in CareSouth Carolina’s Bennettsville pediatric office, attended the College of Charleston before earning her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing as well as her Masters of Science in Nursing at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).
“In pediatrics, we see parents come in for behavioral concerns quite frequently and we wanted to make sure we offer the best quality care to them possible,” Worsham said. “This certificate allows me to better manage and treat many common behavioral conditions- like ADHD and anxiety- as well many others.”
PMHS specialty certification is an objective, measurable way of validating the added expertise of advanced practice nurses in the area of child and adolescent behavioral and mental health within primary care settings.
“Kids have good days and they have bad days,” Worsham said. “They’re just like us and it’s important that we handle those behavioral issues when they come up now rather than later. I’ve always had a passion for working with kids and wouldn’t want to do anything else.”
In addition to foundational graduate level educational preparation and clinical skills as an advanced practice nurse, PMHSs have acquired additional knowledge to evaluate, treat, and manage many common behavioral and mental health concerns within the medical home or specialty clinics. Seeking care from a PMHS in the medical home can reduce stigma and strengthen care coordination. In addition, many PMHSs have robust connections with community resources, such as therapists, psychologists, and other partners in a child’s care.
Established in 1975, the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) is the leading certification organization for pediatric nursing. PNCB’s mission is to provide the highest quality certification services for nursing professionals who care for pediatric populations. PNCB exams are recognized and endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Association of Faculties of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, and the Society of Pediatric Nurses.
For more information about PMHS certification or the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board, visit www.pncb.org.