Jargon and Acronyms 

Because I’m lazy and a student nurse I use jargon and acronyms a lot!! So here’s a guide: (I will also put my social work ones further down).!

AMHP – approved mental health professional 

A&E – accident and emergency 


BNF – British national formulary (the big book of drugs!) 

BP – blood pressure 

BPM – beats per minute 

BPD – boarderline personality disorder (also known as EUPD) 


CAMHS – child and adolescent mental health services 

CBT – cognitive behavioural therapy 

CTT – community treatment team

CM – care manager 

CMHT – community mental health team 

CPN – community psychiatric nurse

CTO – compulsory treatment order (can also mean community treatment order in other parts of uk) 


DBT – dialectical behaviour therapy

DNR/ DNAR – do not resuscitate/ do not attempt resuscitation

DR – doctor

DSM – Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (book of mental disorders)

DWP – department for work and pensions 

EAU – emergency admissions unit 

ECG – electrocardiogram 

ECT – electroconvulsive therapy 

EMDR – eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing 

EUPD – emotionally unstable personality disorder (also known as BPD) 

GCS – Glasgow coma scale (one said on tv a lot!) 

GMC – general medical council 


HCA – health care assistant (also known as hcsw)

HCSW – health care support worker (also known as hca)

HDU – high dependency unit 

HTT – home treatment team


ICD – International Classification of Diseases

ICU – intensive care unit 

IM – intramuscular 

IV – intravenous  

LFT’s, U’s & E’s – liver function tests, urea and electrolytes (I’ve included this one as they say it on tv a lot!!) 

MCA – mental capacity act 

MDT – multi disciplinary team 

MH – mental health 

MHA – mental health act 

MHO – mental health officer

MMSE – mini mental state examination 

MoCHA – montreal cognitive assessment (type of memory/ cognitive assessment test)

NEWS and PEWS – national early warning score and paediatric early warning score

NICE – the national institute for health and care excellence 

NMC – nursing midwifery council 

NOCTE – ‘night’ often used in medication to mean take at night 

NKDA – no known drug allergy 


OCD – obsessive compulsive disorder

OH – occupational health 

OOH – out of hours

OT – occupational therapy/ therapist 


PICU/ IPCU – psychiatric intensive care unit/ intensive psychiatric care unit (PICU can also mean paediatric intensive care unit)

PRN – pro re nata (means medication can be taken when needed) 

Psych – could mean psychologist, psychiatrist or psychiatric 


RCN – royal college of nursing 

RCP – royal college of psychiatrists 

RMO – responsible medical officer 

RMN – registered mental health nurse 

RN – registered nurse 


SAD – seasonal affective disorder 

SATS – oxygen saturation (amount of oxygen in the blood)

STDC – short term detention certificate 

SUBCUT/ SC – subcutaneous 

TPR – temperature, pulse, respiration 

Social work acronyms 

CCO – child care officer 

CIN – child in need 

CL – care leaver 

CLF – care leavers forum 

CM – care manager 

CP – child protection 

EP – educational psychologist 

HCPC – health care professionals council 

IST – intensive support team

LA – local authority 

LAC – looked after child 

MASH – multi-agency safeguarding hub

OOH – out of hours 

SENCo – special educational needs coordinator 

SSSC – Scottish social services council 

SW – social worker / social work 

SSW – senior social worker 

TM – team manager 

YOT – youth offending team