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Crisis Intervention Specialist Mental Health & Substance Use - Temp Part Time (Emergency)



Department / Unit:


Position Type:

Temporary Part Time

Bargaining Unit:


Posting Date:

2023-10-10 11:30

Headwaters Health Care Centre. One Community, Caring Together.

We are a dedicated team of professionals focused on providing the best care possible for our patients, families, and caregivers. We work together to care for the whole person from hospital to home.
We are looking for a Crisis Intervention Specialist Mental Health & Substance Use to work with our Emergency Department in the evening and weekends to help us continue in our mission to serve our community with Kindness, Passion, Courage, and Teamwork

Position Responsibilities:
The Crisis Intervention Specialist will provide emergency crisis assessment and intervention to all patients presenting to the Emergency Department at Headwaters Health Care Centre in the evening and weekend with mental health and/or substance use issues. These activities include but are not limited to: suicide, violence, and risk assessments, mental status examinations, crisis assessments, screening for intoxication and/or withdrawal from substances, and assessments for depression and anxiety. The Crisis Intervention Specialist as an active member of the emergency team, will provide short term solution focused therapy in the moment and as a bridging activity to community referral and engage in teaching, mentoring and supporting clinical staff members and physicians in the management and care of those patients presenting in a mental health or substance use crisis. The Specialist will support the patient, their family or support network to actively explore the clinical issues and ascertain the need for medical/psychiatric intervention and management. The Crisis Specialist will continue to assess, support and consult to those mental health and substance use patients admitted to HHCC to facilitate transfer to psychiatric facilities and/or discharge to the community with resourcing and referral. Inpatient activities will also include ongoing formal and opportunistic education and mentoring in mental health and substance use care.

Duties Include:
  • liaise with police, EMS services and community partners who are presenting with mental health and substance use patients
  • provide immediate de-escalation, and recommendations for management and safe containment within the department
  • collaborate with Emergency staff to enable safe investigation and management of all presenting medical issues
  • establish therapeutic rapport with the patient and engage them in assessment, care and short term follow up
  • support Emergency staff to effectively identify and manage the presenting psychiatric symptoms and recommend course of treatment, observation and staffing supports and safety planning
  • complete mental status, crisis, risk (suicide/violence) and trauma assessments to inform the Emergency staff of requirements for safe management under the Mental Health Act
  • engage in brief solution focused therapy / intervention as crisis management and bridging to connect patients to community resources
  • facilitate admission to inpatient units with a focus on developing safe containment, monitoring, medication management, safety plans, and support staff to maintain
  • develop tools and resources to manage patient crisis situations
  • develop strategies to assist patients to prevent further crisis and establish personal goals that move patients towards recovery
  • connect with and obtain collateral history from hospital, community, family or support networks for a broader understanding of the clinical issues, treatment engagement, referral and resourcing opportunities
  • provide solution focused crisis intervention therapies to emergency based and inpatient patients
  • act as discharge planning liaison for external hospitals who have admitted MH clients and connect them to appropriate community resources to support discharge
  • liaise and connect patient with community providers to support safe discharge, follow up and crisis intervention to support transition back to the community when appropriate
  • build linkages and collaborative relationships and partnerships with local community resources
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.

Other Considerations
  • experience in coaching / teaching and mentoring activities
  • satisfactory work performance and attendance record required
  • a proven commitment to professional development and skill acquisition
  • demonstrated ability to advocate and refer patients to appropriate resources required
  • demonstrated evidence of flexibility and excellent relationships with others in an interdisciplinary team required with a proven ability to work independently as well as a member of the team
  • demonstrate commitment to ensure your safety, the safety of fellow workers, patients, volunteers, and visitors
  • excellent oral and written communication skills
  • proficiency in MS applications

Organizational Accountabilities
  • participation in organizational working groups, committees, task forces or HHCC structures as assigned or appropriate to role and responsibilities
  • maintain and submit regulatory membership & certification yearly
  • practice within the policies and procedures of the organization
  • role model the organizational values, mission and strategic directions
  • other duties as assigned
  • Promotes an environment that encourages and supports change using change management theory
  • All employees of Headwaters Health Care Centre (HHCC) are responsible to contribute to a transparent culture of patient and staff safety by adhering to and abiding by patient and staff safety policies and procedures set by HHCC.


  • Regulated Health Professional: Master of Social Work Degree, Psychiatric Registered Nurse, Occupational Therapist or Psychologist
  • Academic background and current registration in good standing with associated regulatory body (OCSWSSW, CNO, OSOT, OPA)
  • A minimum of 5 years experience in a Mental Health/Psychiatric services environment; 3 years in an Emergency Psychiatric setting is preferred
  • Advanced Crisis Intervention and Counselling Certificate or Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) and/or related certifications an asset
  • Demonstrated clinical acumen with mental health diagnosis and substance use disorders
  • Demonstrated experience with managing aggressive behaviour and superior de-escalation techniques required
  • Demonstrated experience in mental status, suicide, violence, trauma, substance use, crisis, risk and self harm assessments
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the classification of psychiatric illnesses, as outlines in the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-V)
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the main classification of psychotropic medications, including their general use, expected response, and common side effects
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the Mental Health Act, Mental Health Reform and the legal and ethical issues in crisis intervention and psychiatry practice required
  • Demonstrated understanding of issues and needs related to individuals in crisis (e.g. decompensation, potential loss of control, support and structure)
  • Experience with supporting individuals affected by a variety of crises including loss, violence, abuse, crime and traumatic events required
  • Demonstrated experience with high risk populations including child / adolescent / adult and geriatric populations
  • Excellent knowledge related to addictions, substance use disorders, withdrawal protocols and community resources related to addiction treatment/medicine
  • Demonstrated experience in developing community linkages and liaisons
  • Demonstrated evidence of flexibility and excellent relationships with others in an interdisciplinary team required
  • Excellent knowledge related to addictions, substance use disorders, withdrawal protocols and community resources related to addiction treatment/medicine
  • Advanced Crisis Intervention and Counselling Certificate or Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) and/or related certifications an asset
  • Training in CPR, first aid and formal de-escalation protocols (eg. CPI, PMAB)

Why Headwaters?

Our values are more than words, they are what define and connect us. They determine how we work, how we behave, and how we relate to our patients, their families, and caregivers as well as to everyone who is part of the Headwaters community

We offer a wide range of employee perks, for information on our comprehensive benefits package, please visit Headwaters Health Care Centre - Careers at Headwaters

Extra Information

We thank all those who apply but only those individuals selected for further consideration will be contacted.

Headwaters Health Care Centre is an inclusive and equal opportunity employer and supports the compliance of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). If you have a need for an accommodation, please contact Human Resources so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

Headwaters Health Care Centre is a smoke free facility. Smoking is not permitted on hospital properties. We thank everyone who works at or visits our hospitals for respecting this healthy initiative. We are also a scent-free environment for all employees and visitors.

All job offers will require compliance with our COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for proof of full vaccination unless provided with a medical exemption or an accommodation under the Ontario Human Rights Code.

The duration of this temporary contract is approximately 6 months.

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