In the Spring of 2004 there were many European, International and Global Nursing Organisations. However, when it came to psychiatric nursing, unlike so many other specialist nursing groups, it was clear we lacked not just an Organisation but also a representative voice.
Two psychiatric nurses from Malta and the Netherlands sought the interest of other national psychiatric nursing organisations to start a network. This resulted in a group called the Psychiatric Nursing Work Group (PNWG) that first met October 2005 in Amsterdam.
At that meeting the decision was taken to transform the group into an association and with the name ‘Horatio: European Psychiatric Nurses’. In April 2006 the Association was formally established and in May 2006 the second meeting took place in Prague. The network increased rapidly and currently has membership from most European countries.
Some members are individuals; some are representatives of an International Organisation within the field of psychiatric or mental health nursing or the psychiatric sections in their national nursing associations. We also have institutional memberships, such as libraries or universities. We liaise with organisations beyond Europe as well as mental health groups representing both carers and patients with mental health problems. We are in a collaborative partnership with the other professional mental health representative associations in Europe, coordinated by the WHO.