Nurse views on the cardiometabolic health nurse as an approach to improving the physical health of people with serious mental illness in Australia

Brenda Happell, David Scott, Chris Platania-Phung

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13 Citations (Scopus)


People with serious mental illness (SMI) die prematurely from common physical illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. These cardiometabolic risks are preventable and manageable yet these aspects of health care have been neglected in mental health services. A potential nurse-based strategy to decisively improve cardiometabolic health of people with SMI is to introduce a cardiometabolic health nurse (CHN) into mental health services. The current study aimed to establish the views of nurses working in mental health care on the potential benefits and limits of CHN to improve physical health-care standards in Australia. All members of the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses were invited to participate in an online survey and 643 participated. Nurses generally agreed that a CHN role would provide a range of improvements to physical health care, such as increased detection, assessment on, and follow up of cardiometabolic risks, and decreased workload for other nurses. While participants were generally supportive of such a role, they felt it would not be suitable in all health-care settings in Australia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)418-429
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health Nursing
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiometabolic health nurse
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Diabetes
  • Physical health
  • Serious mental illness

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