Implications for Staffing Modern Mental Health Facilities
By Carol Miller RN MBA
Community Mental Health Centers are also referred to as County Mental Health Centers and treat patients usually with no or limited insurance in a domiciliary setting versus an inpatient state or community facility.
And, both children and adults are eligible to receive such assistance.
These programs provide a wide range of psychiatric and counseling services to the residents in their community as well
as other types of assistance. But, what type of mental healthcare staff, and providers, are involved with these facilities?
Staffing levels at community mental health facilities depend on the size and funding of each clinic, and vary in number, qualifications, and mix. Many personnel hold or are working on Master’s degrees and various professional certifications.
Typical staffing would include:
- Administrative or Mental Health Director ¾ This individual, working under general policy directives, is responsible for planning, organizing, coordinating, and directing delivery of a community’s comprehensive mental health programs and services. This would include the development and implementation of goals, objectives, policies, procedures, budget, standard compliance, and work standards for mental health services. The Director is responsible not only for the services offered under the program, but also for extensive coordination with other county departments, public and private organizations, citizen groups, and the Board of Supervisors.
- Case management staff ¾ These personnel are responsible for compiling all the services related to the treatment program.
- Psychiatrists ¾ These individuals may work for a mental health center full or part time, and be Board-eligible or Board-certified in Psychiatry.
- Psychologists ¾ These individuals will hold Ph.D., Psy.D. or Ed.D. qualifications and be licensed as clinical psychologists in the state.
- Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) ¾ These individuals will have expertise in such services as family counseling, child psychology, geriatric dementia, psychological testing, and so on.
- Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) — These individuals are specialized in various fields and provide an array of counseling services to patients, dependent on the nature of their problem.
- Clinical Nurse Specialists ¾ These personnel are certified in psychiatric nursing by a national nursing organization such as the American Nurses Association to practice within the scope of these services and are licensed in the state.
- Support staff ¾ These staff members would include an administrative assistant to the Director, medical billers, transcriptionist, and possibly a receptionist.
- Substance Abuse Counselor or Licensed Professional Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LPC or LPCC) — An individual who takes a holistic approach where they exam a person’s external environmental and societal influences while also monitoring inner emotion, physical and behavioral health.
A licensed mental health counselor has met or exceeded the following professional qualifications:
- earned a Master’s degree in counseling or a closely related mental health discipline;
- completed a minimum of two years post-Master’s clinical work under the supervision of a licensed or certified mental health professional; and
- passed a state-developed or national licensure or certification examination.
- The Wellstone-Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Act
- Fixing the Mental Health Infrastructure of the US
- Drugs and County Mental Health Programs
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Filed under: Career Development, Professional Liability, Quality Initiatives Tagged: | Clinical Nurse Specialists, Licensed Independent Social Worker, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Licensed Professional Clinical Mental Health Counselor, LISW, LMFT, LPC, LPCC, Mental Healthcare Provider Types, Psychiatrists, Psychologist, Substance Abuse Counselor