1+ months

Mental Health Specialist III/ Clinical Therapist - (100252)

Universal Health Services
Anchorage, AK 99501
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The Mental Health Specialist III/Clinical Therapist is responsible for providing direct care to patients with psychiatric disorder; ensures the safety and well being of patients by supporting the maintenance of therapeutic milieu. The MHS III/CT is also responsible for providing leadership and direction to the MHS I and MHS II staff based upon experience and special training in various areas of mental health service delivery (i.e. group therapy, milieu management diagnostic based training, grief & loss, etc.). Because the purpose of the MHS III/CT is to provide leadership and training in the provision of care, there are a limited number of positions available and the position is awarded based on special application. Additionally, the MHS III/CT;

  • Coordinates with the Nurse/Nurse Manager to identify and communicate MHS assignments and duties for the shift.
  • Provides appropriate and timely feedback and guidance to less experienced staff regarding patient care duties, documentation, milieu management, and other aspects of the job.
  • Partners with the Nurse/Nurse Manager to coordinate training for skill development for group facilitation with MHS staff through shadowing and role modeling on the unit, etc.
  • Assumes a leadership role in identifying patients problems, needs, and strengths and works with the Nurse to ensure intervention is carried out.
  • Provides daily psychotherapy groups as outlined on unit schedules and in patients treatment plans.
  • Provides verbal input into the development of treatment plan goals, interventions, and special programs.
  • Coordinates with the Nurse, Nurse Mgr, and DON to ensure that the MHS staffs documentation reflect treatment plan goals and interventions.
  • Recognizes signs of patient escalation and demonstrates de-escalation skills using verbal de-escalation and Handle with Care techniques; communicates with Nurse regarding patient care concerns.
  • Partners with the Nurse/Nurse Mgr to ensure completion of 15 minute checks.
  • Ensures MHS staff adheres to guidelines for patients on special status (i.e. suicide, sexual, or AWOL precautions).
  • Displays and monitors unit activities to ensure professional boundaries in relationships with patients.
  • Facilitates and manages age appropriate psychotherapy groups as outlines in unit schedules and coordinates with the Nurse to ensure groups occur.
  • Utilizes and role models effective therapeutic techniques in interacting with patients, such as active listening, validation, etc.
  • Communicates with patients and families in a manner which projects empathy, helpfulness and desire to positively impact patients treatment and provides role modeling to less experienced staff.
  • Attends change of shift reports if possible, or provides accurate information to the Nurse/Nurse Manager before report.
  • Completes daily documentation legibly, completely, and in a timely manner.
  • Promotes effective teamwork to establish a milieu which minimizes the occurrence of aggressive behavior; ensures policy is followed during any physical interactions with patients.
  • Supports milieu management and patient safety initiatives; assists with contraband searches and facilitates belonging searches as directed.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.
Job Requirements

EDUCATION & EXPERIENCE:Masters Degree in Psychology, Social Work, Human Services, or related field. Completion of internship is required.


  • Ability to perform assignments with minimal supervision;
  • Ability to work successfully under highly stressful conditions;
  • Ability to make sound, independent judgments based on scientific and/or ethical principles;
  • Capability of adapting to varying workloads and work assignments on a constant basis;
  • Effective comprehensive reading skills, strong communication skills, written and verbal.
  • Must have a working knowledge of computers.


  • Must be willing and able to execute the patient de-escalation methods, both verbal and physical.
  • Must be able to complete new hire requirements such as State of Alaska Background Check and Drug Testing.
  • Must be able to demonstrate special training, knowledge and skills specific to age groups, as well as job and/or program specific competency within the first three (3) months of training.
  • Must be certified in CPR and Handle with Care within the first month of training and annually thereafter.
  • Must complete all mandatory in-services annually.
  • Must be tested for Tuberculosis with a PPD skin test or chest x-ray upon hire; PPD skin test required annually or chest x-ray annually thereafter.

GENERAL WORKING ENVIRONMENT:Working conditions for all employees are as follows, but not limited to a psychiatric hospital setting; some risk involved in the event of aggressive patient(s); work load may include day, evening, night, weekend and/or holiday shifts. Employees occasionally exposed to blood borne pathogens. The Dietary Manager is occasionally exposed to outdoor weather conditions, extreme heat (non-weather), toxic or caustic chemicals, risk of fire or explosion, and risk of electric shock. Frequently exposed to wet or humid conditions (non-weather) and extreme cold (non-weather), and regularly exposed to loud noise levels. Subject to a variety of physical conditions, such as proximity to moving mechanical parts, electrical current and exposure to high heat. May be exposed to conditions that affect the respiratory system or the skin, such as fumes, odors, dusts, mists, gases or lessened ventilation. Mental demands described herein are representative of those which must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of the job, but are not limited to the ability to remain calm in a stressful environment; and the emotional stability, physical stamina and agility to handle stress and respond quickly and effectively to emergency situations.

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: Requirements include, but are not limited to the ability to communicate effectively with employees; the ability to effectively utilize communication equipment; the physical agility to manage patients (ambulatory, non-ambulatory and physically aggressive); the ability to read, write and spend a great deal of time of a computer.

  • Frequently utilize physical ability for standing or sitting for long periods of time.
  • Regularly utilize physical ability for speaking, hearing, and seeing with correction for close and distance vision, color discrimination, peripheral vision, depth perception and focusing ability. Speaking and hearing may be necessary for conversing with and assessing employees.
  • Able to ascend/descend stairs and ramps; body agility is emphasized.
  • Able to bend body downward and forward by bending spine at the waist; bend legs at knee to come to a rest on knee(s)
  • Able to extend hands and arms in any direction
  • Able to use upper and lower extremities to exert force in a pulling or pushing motion. Exerting up to 50 pounds of force occasionally, and/or up to 20 pounds of force frequently, and/or up to 10 pounds of force constantly to move objects
  • Able to raise objects from a lower to higher position or from side-to-side.
  • The worker is subject to both environmental conditions: Activities occur inside and outside.
  • The worker is subject to hazards: Includes a variety of physical conditions
  • Must be able to concentrate amidst distractions; must be able to perform work of a repetitive nature; must respond calmly to potentially volatile clients
  • Mental demands include but are not limited to emotional stability, physical stamina and agility to handle stress and respond quickly and effectively to emergency situations.


Telephone, computer, copier, fax machine, video player, small hand tools, writing instruments.

Posted: 2019-11-07 Expires: 2020-03-29

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Mental Health Specialist III/ Clinical Therapist - (100252)

Universal Health Services
Anchorage, AK 99501

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