Psychiatric Aides

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Also known as:  Mental Health Orderly, Psychiatric Aide, Psychiatric Nursing Aide, Psychiatric Orderly, Psychiatric Technician Assistant

ABOUT PSYCHIATRIC AID CAREERS

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT Expand
Some people with mental illness require constant assistance with daily life. That help often comes from psychiatric aides. (In this video, an actor plays the part of a patient to illustrate the job of an aide.) Working under the direction of health care professionals such as psychiatrists and nurses ...
, psychiatric aides help patients dress and bathe, accompany them to exams and treatment and offer companionship.

Because of their close contact with patients, psychiatric aides can be the first to notice behavioral changes that require special care. The need for psychiatric aides is expected to increase. Since care is given around the clock, these jobs often have shifts at nights or on weekend and holidays.

Working conditions are usually indoors and comfortable. However, the work can be demanding, especially of patients become fearful or angry. So a psychiatric aide must be strong - emotionally and physically. Most employers require a high school diploma, along with training in specialized courses at high school, vocational and community colleges, or at a nursing facility or hospital.

Some people choose to work as a psychiatric aide while attending school for other health occupations. Not everyone has the patience and strength to be a psychiatric aide. But those who do can bring a wealth of comfort to people with troubled lives.
SNAPSHOT Expand
Assist mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed patients, working under direction of nursing and medical staff. May assist with daily living activities, lead patients in educational and recreational activities, or accompany patients to and from examinations and treatments. May restrain violent patients. Includes psychiatric orderlies.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
HIGH
Level of responsibilities
HIGH
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
HIGH
Dealing and handling conflict
HIGH
Competition for this position
LOW
Communication with others
HIGH
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
HIGH
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
LOW
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
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DAILY TASKS Expand
Accompany patients to and from wards for medical or dental treatments, shopping trips, or religious or recreational events.
Provide patients with assistance in bathing, dressing, or grooming, demonstrating these skills as necessary.
Clean and disinfect rooms and furnishings to maintain a safe and orderly environment.
Maintain patients' restrictions to assigned areas.
Participate in recreational activities with patients, including card games, sports, or television viewing.
Record and maintain patient information, such as vital signs, eating habits, behavior, progress notes, treatments, or discharge plans.
Restrain or aid patients as necessary to prevent injury.
Complete physical checks and monitor patients to detect unusual or harmful behavior and report observations to professional staff.
Organize, supervise, or encourage patient participation in social, educational, or recreational activities.
Provide mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed patients with routine physical, emotional, psychological, or rehabilitation care under the direction of nursing or medical staff.
Work as part of a team that may include psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurses, or social workers.
MAIN ACTIVITIES Expand
Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE Expand
Psychology Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
Therapy and Counseling Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
Public Safety and Security Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Customer and Personal Service Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Sociology and Anthropology Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Medicine and Dentistry Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
KEY ABILITIES Expand
Problem Sensitivity The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Oral Comprehension The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Deductive Reasoning The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Written Comprehension The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Speech Clarity The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Written Expression The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
TOP SKILLS Expand
Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Service Orientation Actively looking for ways to help people.
Monitoring Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
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