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Douglas County  7330
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*MENTAL HEALTH SPECIALIST 1
Pay Range GC16

INTRODUCTION

This classification serves as a case manager and performs mental health casework for the mental health division of the health and social services department. Employees typically provide outpatient service to mentally and emotionally disturbed, treatment of the severely and persistently psychiatrically disabled, services to the mentally retarded/developmentally disabled and service for other behavioral health disorders. This classification performs a wide range of duties including determine the eligibility of clients, evaluate and assess needs, develop, monitor and review treatment plans, provide group and/or individual counseling including some crisis intervention; refer clients to other agencies; work within inter-disciplinary team to provide appropriate services to clients; provide consultation and training; recruit, certify and train adult foster home providers. Some positions may direct volunteers.

This classification is distinguished from the mental health assistant by the degree of professional skill and judgment necessary to perform casework responsibilities. This classification is distinguished from the mental health specialist 2 which performs lead case manager duties including giving direction to lower level positions.

EXAMPLES OF PRINCIPAL DUTIES

(Duties assigned to this classification include, but are not limited to, the following examples. Any one position may not perform all listed duties.)

1. Evaluate and assess clients needs, choices and preferences; develop, review and revise individualized service plan; coordinate and monitor progression of plan through contact with client, family and friends, service providers, physicians, therapists and others who may be involved with client.

2. Provide counseling and guidance to individuals and groups; perform crisis intervention as necessary.

3. Provide information to clients/families/significant others of services available; serve as an advocate/liaison in assisting clients in obtaining necessary services from community resources and other professionals; provide advocacy for clients in legal system including victim's assistance; provide protective services through referrals.

4. Provide skill training, information and/or counseling to clients provided in a client homes, residential living, school setting or County Health Center.

5. Recruit for, certify and train foster home providers; monitor foster home budget; monitor clients referred to foster home care and ensure compliance with state, county and departmental rules, regulations, policy and procedures.

6. Screen, monitor and maintain client waiting lists for residential, vocational and support services.

7. Provide consultation and training to clients, professionals and community service agents; attend training sessions; develop, modify and/or obtain training programs and materials.

8. Serve as member of inter-disciplinary team to give and exchange information on clients, provide and receive recommendations and negotiate or assign responsibility for procuring needed services from various community agencies; serve as staff representative to various committees involved in mental health programs such as early intervention committee.

9. Assist in promoting community interest in and support of mental health programs.

10. Organize, gather, maintain and complete required records, reports and statistical information required by departmental policy and state law.

11. Perform special projects such as alcohol and drug groups, self-advocacy groups, etc.

12. Direct, train and monitor volunteers assisting in program areas such as semi independent living program, etc.

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES REQUIRED BY THIS POSITION

Knowledge of: Considerable knowledge of social service theory, practices and procedures to be able to identify the problem, decide an appropriate action, and provide indicated services; considerable knowledge of human behavior as it relates to crisis situations and problems of client population; reasonable knowledge of laws relating to mental health; considerable knowledge of sound case management principles, practices and procedures; considerable knowledge of behavior intervention, management and support strategies; considerable knowledge of community resources, functions and procedures of other social service agencies and service providers; reasonable knowledge of educational theories and techniques. Skill in: Writing clear and concise correspondence, records, treatment plans, reports and statistical data; interviewing, counseling and listening techniques and principles; family and group dynamics. Ability to: Communicate effectively both in written and oral form; plan/consult/coordinate with physicians, source agencies, families of clients and the community; participate in diagnostic and treatment conferences within an inter-disciplinary team; work with and relate to a diverse population of people with mental and physical handicaps; work independently, efficiently organize time and meet established deadlines; remain calm and use good judgment during confrontational or high pressure situations; make decisions independently in accordance with established policies and procedures and use initiative and judgment in completing tasks and responsibilities; utilize problem identification and resolution techniques; teach socialization and living skills to individuals with various learning levels; establish and maintain records, reports and statistical data; courteously meet and deal effectively with other employees, clients, families, schools, service agencies, service providers, physicians, professionals, team and committee members and the public.

Education, experience and training: Bachelor's degree in psychology, social work, or related social science plus two years experience in a mental health setting OR a satisfactory equivalent combination of education, experience and training. At time of appointment, just possess a valid Oregon driver's license.

Certification: Some positions may require additional professional licensing or certification in specializing areas or experiences with specific target population.

Desirable qualifications: Some positions may desire specialized experience in areas such as with developmentally disabled population, skills training, etc.

SUPERVISORY CONTROLS OF THIS POSITION

Work is performed under the general direction of a mental health specialist 4. Recurring routine assignments are independently performed by employee on basis of past experience. The employee receives general instructions regarding the scope and approach to projects or assignments, but procedures and problem resolution are left to employee discretion and interpretation. Employee estimates and manages time efficiently. Work is reviewed periodically to ensure determinations and decisions are in compliance to department policy and procedures. Case supervision, advise and consultation provided by mental health specialists of a higher classification.

GUIDELINES

Work is performed within departmental policy and procedures, federal, state and county statutes, rules, regulations and ordinances; mental health and counseling reference materials, corrections guidelines, application of clinical ethics of social work; physical restraint procedures. Available guidelines may not completely apply to every situation encountered, so the mental health specialist uses considerable judgment in interpreting and adapting to individual situations.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS AND WORK ENVIRONMENT

Regular and consistent attendance is required.  Work is performed in an office environment, residential living setting, schools and in the field; may involve bending, hearing voice conversation, keyboarding, lifting up to 15 pounds, sitting, standing and walking. Considerable attention is given to personal safety when in contact with potentially aggressive clients. Employees must maintain a positive mental attitude and a tolerance for pressure situations. Some positions may require extensive driving.

 
   
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