Mental health technicians are amongst the highest paid health care providers at the moment. Simply put, these are skilled professionals who work closely with psychiatrists as well as with other mental health practitioners, helping them diagnose and treat different mental disorders. Their duty is to also take care of patients who have various mental or developmental disabilities, as well as to closely monitor both their emotional and their physical conditions.Statistically speaking, the average yearly wage of a mental health technician in the United States of America is of around $32,000, although some of them make as much as $50,000 a year or even more.
Pay Scale In Different Parts Of The United States
California and Boston are two of the areas where mental health technicians receive salaries that are above the national average. While those from Boston make around $39,000 a year, those who reside and work in the state of California usually earn around $52,000 a year. At the same time, the state of Pennsylvania rewards its mental health technician with as much as $58,000 a year.
Mental Health Technician Job Description
Commonly referred to as behavioral health technicians, mental health workers or psychiatric technicians, the mental health technicians are professional workers who help people who are either developmentally disabled or mentally ill. These health care specialists can choose to work either on a full-time or a part-time basis, and they can work either in private clinics or in hospitals.
Mental health technicians have a series of different duties and responsibilities, but generally speaking it is the duty of these professionals to admit and to discharge the patients, to keep in touch with them as well as to keep an eye on both their blood pressure and their heart rate. It is also the duty of the mental health technician to consult with other mental health specialists and to help patients with daily tasks, from dressing and bathing to eating and such. These health care specialists typically have to deal with patients who are disabled, mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed, and they need to assist them in doing basic daily things including their grooming needs.
On the other hand, these professionals often have to deal with a variety of other administrative tasks as well. The mental health technicians are an important part of the health team, along with psychiatrists, therapists and nurses, and they help them develop and apply different patient treatment schemes as well as admit them into various psychiatric facilities, according to their needs and diagnosis.
How To Become A Mental Health Technician?
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- Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
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- Psy.D. Clinical Psychology
Becoming a mental health technician is more than just formal training, as one must fully understand medical technology and all the mental disorders. Moreover, these professionals also need to be familiar with all the ethical and legal responsibilities and they must possess good communication and interpersonal skills.
As mentioned above, mental health technicians are essential for the proper functioning of the mental health team, and the amount of training these health care professionals require depends a lot on the type of work environment where they plan to work, as well as on their desired profession (which can be either psychiatric aide or mental health aide).
Generally speaking, becoming a mental health technician requires students to have only a high school diploma or an equivalent, in order to enroll in a specialized training program. During that training program, the students will also take various psychology classes where they will improve their knowledge and their skill set. It is up to the mental health technician to decide whether he will enroll in one of the many certificate programs offered by vocational schools or community colleges, but most of these professionals opt for a certification that will increase their job opportunities as well as their salary.
Also, most of the current mental health technicians have received their training and experience on the job, and they have also participated in numerous training programs. In spite of the fact that a certification is not always required, it does help those who want to enter the workforce. The training period/internship is extremely important for all those who plan to work as mental health techs in the future, given the fact that it will help them better understand the community that they are about to serve.
Also, they are highly advised to take courses and classes in different areas of psychology, such as psychopharmacology, counseling, psychology and patient care, as all of these fields will benefit them in the long haul. Those who want to get an Associate’s Degree should know that in order to do so, they must firstly enroll in a two-year training program.
Becoming a mental health technician also involves helping the mentally disabled patients bathe and clean, observing their signs, symptoms and behavior as well as talking and counseling them in such a way that they feel safe and comfortable around you.
Mental Health Technician Certification
The certification comes to reinforce the fact that you are a skilled and highly trained individual who can efficiently provide patients with all the care and attention they need. This is one of the most demanding and rewarding behavioral health fields, and it covers a wide array of smaller areas from social and personal problems to mental health and family problems. The certification requirements vary greatly according to the state where you live in, but if you want to get certified in the state of Florida for instance, then you will receive the credential of Certified Behavioral Health Technician.
Mental Health Certification Salary In Canada, Australia And The UK
In Canada, these professionals typically earn around C$75,000, while those who live in Australia should expect to earn between Au$30,000 and Au$68,000. Moreover, those who live in the United Kingdom usually start with a salary of 17,000 to 20,000 pounds.
Verdict On Mental Health Technician
If you are genuinely passionate about helping people and you have the empathy and the communication skills that are required for the position, then you should know that the salary of a mental health technician is usually very encouraging, even for those who are at the beginning of the road.