Psychiatric Aides
SOC: 31-1013.00


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.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
77,300 employed

Projected (2024):
81,400 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Behavioral Health Aide
  • Certified Nurses' Aide (CNA)
  • Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)
  • Charge Aide
  • Charge Attendant
  • Clinical Assistant
  • Developmental Diabetes Secure Care Treatment Aide (DDSCTA)
  • Health Service Worker
  • Mental Health Aide (MHA)
  • Mental Health Assistant
  • Mental Health Orderly
  • Mental Health Technician (MHT)
  • Mental Health Worker (MHW)
  • Mental Retardation Aide
  • Neuropsychiatric Aide
  • Nursing Assistant
  • Patient Care Assistant (PCA)
  • Professional Nursing Assistant (PNA)
  • Psychiatric Aide
  • Psychiatric Assistant
  • Psychiatric Attendant
  • Psychiatric Nursing Aide
  • Psychiatric Nursing Assistant
  • Psychiatric Orderly
  • Psychiatric Technician
  • Psychiatric Technician Assistant
  • Resident Care Technician
  • Residential Counselor
  • Therapeutic Program Worker (TPW)

  • Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed


    Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.


    These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Technology Design
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Troubleshooting
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Mathematics
  • Chemistry
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Medicine and Dentistry
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • 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.
  • Aid patients in becoming accustomed to hospital routine.
  • Organize, supervise, or encourage patient participation in social, educational, or recreational activities.
  • Perform nursing duties, such as administering medications, measuring vital signs, collecting specimens, or drawing blood samples.
  • Serve meals or feed patients needing assistance or persuasion.
  • Restrain or aid patients as necessary to prevent injury.
  • Interview patients upon admission and record information.
  • Provide patients with assistance in bathing, dressing, or grooming, demonstrating these skills as necessary.
  • Participate in recreational activities with patients, including card games, sports, or television viewing.
  • Maintain patients' restrictions to assigned areas.
  • Accompany patients to and from wards for medical or dental treatments, shopping trips, or religious or recreational events.
  • Clean and disinfect rooms and furnishings to maintain a safe and orderly environment.
  • Complete physical checks and monitor patients to detect unusual or harmful behavior and report observations to professional staff.
  • Record and maintain patient information, such as vital signs, eating habits, behavior, progress notes, treatments, or discharge plans.
  • Complete administrative tasks, such as entering orders into computer, answering telephone calls, or maintaining medical or facility information.
  • Listen and provide emotional support and encouragement to psychiatric patients.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Automatic blood pressure cuffs
  • Bedpans
  • Blood collection syringes
  • Desktop computers
  • Digital patient thermometers
  • Enema equipment
  • Evacuated blood collection tubes
  • Hydraulic patient lifts
  • Intubation suctioning kits
  • Multi-line telephone systems
  • Oxygen delivery masks
  • Patient restraints
  • Personal computers
  • Safety razors
  • Specimen collection containers
  • Two way radios
  • Urinalysis test strips
  • Wheelchairs
  • Data entry software
  • Email software
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Microsoft Word

  • healthcare support

    industry stats

    SOC: 31-0000

    Total Employed: 3,989,910

    Average Annual Salary: $29,520