What does a Psychiatric Technician do?

Psychiatric technicians are the support staff working in the mental health care field. They are employed in locations including hospitals, private institutions, or patient residences. They observe and report patient behavior, moods, and their general well-being. They are responsible for ensuring patients are comfortable during and between their treatments and provide needed hands-on care for people with mental disabilities or mental illnesses.

Psychiatric technicians provide transportation to and from treatment and some are tasked with bathing, dressing, and feeding patients based upon their individual abilities. They track patients’ behavioral changes if necessary to help health care providers get a better understanding of the patient's behavior patterns. They measure vital signs and take samples of bodily fluids including urine if needed or requested by the health care provider. They administer medication and conduct recreational and therapeutic activities. Psychiatric technicians need certification or an associate’s degree in psychiatric or mental health technology, certification in CPR, and a license when required by the state.

What responsibilities are common for Psychiatric Technician jobs?
  • Assist with physical care under the direction of a RN.
  • Recognize changes in patient status and reports to charge nurse.
  • Contribute to the achievement of quality care and positive patient outcomes.
  • Supervise, observe, transport and assist clients during assigned shifts.
  • Perform observation and monitoring of assigned patients on a one-to-one basis.
  • Establish therapeutic rapport and maintain appropriate boundaries with patients.
  • Take patients' vital signs upon admission and per doctor's orders.
  • Perform unit support activities as needed and directed by manager or designee.
  • Attend report at change of shift as assigned.
  • Assist in daily self-care activities, including training on personal hygiene
  • Provide one-on-one instruction for children diagnosed with a pervasive developmental disorder.
  • Estimate the quantities of resource materials needed to conduct treatment mall classes based on number of groups and number of participants in each group.
  • Ensure clients are adhering and attending their daily schedule of activity.
  • Assist with follow-up and paperwork as required on incidents and events that may take place in the facility.
  • Participate in various therapeutic activities such as role playing, behavior modification, modeling, reality orientation, etc.
  • Monitor and maintain a safe living environment.
  • conduct safety checks and ensuring that supervision is conducted at 15 minute intervals, as noted in special precautions, or in accordance with individualized supervision guidelines as needed.
  • Be alert and ensure safety of staff and participants
  • Report all medical concerns to the proper colleagues.
  • Responsible for the maintenance and stocking the medication cart and other areas associated with the self-administration of medications to the inmates.
What are the typical qualifications for Psychiatric Technician jobs?
  • Bachelor's or Graduate's Degree in applied sciences, behavior sciences, exercise science, psychology or information technology, or equivalent experience.
  • Strong command of English language and good communication skills.
  • Demonstrates excellent leadership and collaboration abilities, along with solid time management and problem solving skills.
  • Advanced understanding of HIPAA regulations.
  • BCBA certification is preferred.
  • CPR training required.
Education--
Work/Life Balance
3.0 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.0 ★
Avg. Experience8+ years

How much does a Psychiatric Technician make?

Confident
$76,865 /yr
Total Pay
$43,416
 /yr

Base Pay

+
$33,449
 /yr

Additional Pay

$76,865

 / yr
$32K$637K
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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Psychiatric Technician Career Path

Learn how to become a Psychiatric Technician, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
33%
2 - 4
19%
5 - 7
1%
8+
47%
Not including years spent in education and/or training
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Psychiatric Technician Insights

Read what Psychiatric Technician professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Midwest Recovery CenterMidwest Recovery Center
Behavioral Health Technician
Apr 30, 2021

“Everything is great here and I have never been happier to go to work!!”

East Alabama Mental HealthEast Alabama Mental Health
Mental Health Technician
Nov 24, 2021

“Overtime is unlimited (time and a half) and you get holiday pay double your pay per hour.”

Action Behavior Centers - ABA Therapy for AutismAction Behavior Centers - ABA Therapy for Autism
Registered Behavioral Technician
Dec 20, 2021

“Despite all this many of the therapists at the Cedar Park location are top notch and really try their best.”

Windmoor HealthcareWindmoor Healthcare
MHT
Nov 4, 2020

“I worked PRN; so my schedule was pretty open and I was able to set it up the way I wanted.”

St. Joseph Medical CenterSt. Joseph Medical Center
Mental Health Technician
Oct 29, 2021

“Good team work and good administrative”

Forest HomeForest Home
Health Technician
Jun 14, 2022

“Everyone I worked with on the first aid team was incredibly knowledgeable and hardworking.”

University Neuropsychiatric InstituteUniversity Neuropsychiatric Institute
Psychiatric Technician
May 12, 2021

“The pay is really good and our differentials are unbeatable.”

Austin Oaks HospitalAustin Oaks Hospital
Mental Health Technician
Oct 13, 2020

“Great and loving people to work with.”

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Psychiatric Technician Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a Psychiatric Technician

The most similar professions to Psychiatric Technician are:
  • Therapist
  • Mental Health Therapist
  • Outpatient Therapist
  • Behavior Therapist

Related Careers

Therapist
$79,969
No skills overlap
Mental Health Therapist
$86,943
No skills overlap
Outpatient Therapist
$87,601
No skills overlap
Behavior Therapist
$69,526
No skills overlap

Psychiatric Technician Jobs