Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinician

Arlington County Government

Job Expired

Job Overview

Position Information
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  *This position includes a $1500.00 gross signing bonus at hire and $1500.00 gross bonus at the completion of the probationary period. Arlington County’s Department of Human Services (DHS) is hiring experienced Mental Health Clinicians to serve as Emergency Services Clinicians in the Client Services Entry (CSE) Bureau of the Behavioral Healthcare Division (BHD). These employees will provide comprehensive crisis intervention and stabilization to persons with serious mental illness, dual diagnoses, and acute psychiatric and substance abuse-related issues, in order to prevent unnecessary hospitalizations and lengthy emergency department stays, to also de-escalating and preventing future crises. Services offered are trauma-informed, culturally competent, strengths-based, needs-driven, and are responsive, adaptive, as well as respectful. *This position is considered “essential” and is part of a team that provides services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Specific duties include:

  • Providing assessments and interventions in multiple settings including home, schools, juvenile justice settings, community organizations, as well as hospital inpatient units and emergency departments;
  • Developing and maintaining working relationships with BHD staff and with other agencies including police, courts, schools, magistrates, fire and rescue, VHC Health, and other agencies involved in emergency interventions;
  • Conducting diagnostic assessments and risk analyses, utilizing a strengths-based approach;
  • Developing and implementing strategies for clients and for families to alleviate crisis including time-limited crisis interventions, short term counseling, and/or intensive care coordination;
  • Conducting pre-admission screening for hospitalization or other diversionary services (partial hospitalization, residential, respite, intensive community services), ensuring that services are provided in the least restrictive environments; and
  • Ensuring high quality and timely documentation within an electronic record management system by staff.

The ideal candidate is patient, calm, understanding, inquisitive, convincing, while often under pressure to complete tasks under the allowed time limit. They will have proven experience completing documentation in a timely manner to ensure that subsequent staff have the information necessary to follow up on cases. The desire and ability to work under uncertain conditions and unknown hours is also essential for this role.

Selection Criteria

  • Master’s degree in a clinical discipline such as Counseling, Psychiatric Social Work, Psychology, Art Therapy, Psychiatric Nursing or other directly related clinical discipline, all of which required a clinical practicum prior to graduation involving diagnostic and treatment services; and
  • Two years of post-Master’s degree full-time experience providing mental health services and which include one-year minimum of working with seriously mentally ill individuals in crisis.

Clinicians may be hired at the following levels: For Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinician (Licensed):

  • Licensure by the appropriate board of the Virginia Department of Health Professions, appropriate to the employee’s discipline (e.g. LPC, LCP, LMFT, or LCSW) at time of employment.

For Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinician (Resident/Supervisee):

  • Within 90 days of hire, obtaining a temporary license as a Resident in Counseling (for LPC or LMFT), Resident in Clinical Psychology (for LCP) or registering as a Supervisee in Social Work (for LCSW) with the Virginia Department of Health Professions (VDHP). Licensure by the appropriate board of Virginia Department of Health Professions must be obtained within 3 years of hire.

For Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinician (Non-VA Licensed):

  • Licensure in another jurisdiction at time of employment and licensure by the appropriate board of the Virginia Department of Health Professions, appropriate to the employee’s discipline (e.g., LPC, LCP, LMFT, or LCSW) must be obtained within 90 days of employment.

All Levels: Possession or obtainment of:

  • Preadmission Prescreening Clinician Certification from the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health & Development Sciences (DBHDS) within 60 days of employment (90 days for on-call, temporary employees);
  • TOVA training from Arlington County within one year of employment; and
  • Medication Administration Certification from a CSB-approved vendor within 90 days of employment.

Substitution: Directly related higher-level clinical degrees may substitute for the Master’s degree education requirement and one year of experience. Desirable: Preference may be given to candidates with one or more of the following:

  • Experience providing services to individuals experiencing a behavioral health emergency;
  • Experience working with clients with co-occurring substance use disorders;
  • Experience collaborating with criminal justice partners (particularly law enforcement, correctional officers, and court staff); and
  • Prescreen certified.
Special Requirements
  Prescreen Certification: Application, requirements, and instructions for obtaining a Preadmission Prescreening Clinician Certification from the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health & Development Sciences can be found on the Virginia DBHDS Webpage. ( Driver’s License: The applicant must possess, or obtain by time of appointment, a valid driver’s license. The applicant must authorize Arlington County to obtain or provide a copy of their official driving record. Any offer of employment may be contingent upon a favorable review of the applicant’s driving record. Background Check: A pre-employment criminal records check will be conducted. It may include checks of the following: criminal record, driving record, education, professional licensure, and credit history. You may be required to sign a release authorizing the County to obtain your background information. A pre-hire federal background check and State of Virginia Central Registry check will also be completed before hire. Employment restrictions: To ensure that dual relationships are avoided and that employees who are also clients do not relate to their service provider as co-professionals, employees will not be hired by the County to provide or support services to the team or program in which they are current clients:

  • You cannot concurrently receive behavioral health services from Arlington County Community Service Board (CSB) programs while employed in an Arlington County CSB program (exception Crisis Intervention services).
  • At least 24 months must have passed between receipt of CSB services from Arlington County and employment in an Arlington County CSB program.
Additional Information
  Additional InformationThis position is funded with ongoing State funds.Work Hours: Multiple shifts available Rotating shifts (Sunday – Saturday) are available in Emergency Services: Monday – Friday 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. or Wednesday – Saturday 3:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. (*See below) or Monday – Friday and possible weekends 11:00 p.m. – 7:00 a.m. *Emergency services with mobile response is considered “essential”, and therefore, may be required to work beyond scheduled hours as needed.   Your responses to the Supplemental Questionnaire are considered part of the selection process. Please do not enter “see resume” as a response to the questions. Each section of the application must be completed. A resume may be attached; however, it will not substitute for the completed application. A cover letter will also be required to be attached to your application. Incomplete applications will not be considered. The official title for this position is Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinician (Licensed). All Behavioral Health Emergency Services Clinicians are eligible for County government employee benefits that include health, dental, vacation and sick leave, commuter transportation subsidies, tuition reimbursement, as well as a generous retirement plan. For more information on Arlington County’s generous benefits and retirement plan, click here. Arlington County is committed to advancing diversity, equity, access, and inclusion across all our services, activities, and programs. Learn more about our commitment.NOTE:  This position is listed as “open continuous.”  Interested applicants are advised to submit their applications as soon as possible. Applications will be reviewed, and qualified applicants referred on a continuous basis. Interviews will be conducted on a regular basis throughout the recruitment with candidates whose qualifications best fit our needs. If your application is received later in the recruitment process, it may not be reviewed or considered. The application process will close when the position has been filled or when a sufficient number of qualified applications have been received. #LI-Onsite
Applicants who have questions or need assistance with the application may telephone (703) 228-3500 or visit the Human Resources Department. Our staff will be happy to work with you to enter your application into the system. Public access computers are available at all County Libraries, and in the Human Resources Department. The examination process for this position may include: (1) training and experience evaluation; (2) written and oral examination; (3) personal interview; (4) performance test/work sample; and/or (5) physical examination. Applicants with disabilities may request reasonable accommodation during the application or selection process. Please call the ADA Coordinator at 703-228-3559 (voice) or email

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