Psychiatric Nurse I/Ii

Santa Barbara County, CA Santa Barbara , CA 93101

Posted 2 months ago



Psychiatric Nurse I $83,288.61 - $100,252.72 Annually

Psychiatric Nurse II $87,214.48 - $105,042.66 Annually

Bilingual allowance when applicable

Special Duty Assignment allowance when

regularly assigned to the Psychiatric Health Facility.

NOTE: The County may provide reimbursement for reasonable relocation expenses, and, at the discretion of the CEO, can provide flexible relocation assistance, housing and student loan offsets, cash incentives, and/or vacation and sick leave pre-accruals in the interest of attracting the best talent to the organization.

We are currently accepting applications to fill one (1) full-time Psychiatric Nurse I/II in Santa Barbara. The current vacancy is in the Behavioral Wellness Department.

We are also accepting applications to establish one employment list to fill full-time, part-time, and Extra Help Psychiatric Nurse I vacancies at All Locations for the Behavioral Wellness Department. Separate lists for different locations will not be established. Therefore, you must check "All Locations" on the application and must be willing to accept an assignment at any location. The selected candidate may need to travel between different sites within Santa Barbara County. The operational area may include: Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, Goleta, Lompoc, Los Olivos, Santa Mara, and Santa Ynez.


The County of Santa Barbara's Department of Behavioral Wellness is responsible for ensuring the provision of mental health services mandated by the State of California for children with serious emotional disturbance, adults with serious mental illness, and all Medi-Cal beneficiaries with specialty mental health needs. Behavioral Wellness also provides substance use disorder treatment services for Medi-Cal beneficiaries. Our Mission is to promote the prevention of and recovery from addiction and mental illness among individuals; families and communities by providing effective leadership and delivering state-of-the-art, culturally competent services that are guided by measurable client-specific outcomes. Behavioral Wellness annually provides treatment, rehabilitation and support services to approximately 9,800 clients (3,000 children/adolescents and 6,900 adults) with mental illness and 4,500 clients with substance use disorders. For more information, please visit:


NOTE: Candidates may be appointed at the Psychiatric Nurse I or II level, depending on the candidate's qualifications and the needs of the department. Information regarding both levels is contained in this bulletin.

Psychiatric Nurse I/II is a flexibly staffed series. Psychiatric Nurse I is the entry-level class in this series. Incumbents learn to perform the range of psychiatric nursing duties required to care for primarily high risk, mentally ill patients in a locked institutional setting. Incumbents are expected to progress to the Psychiatric Nurse II level within a reasonable period of time. Psychiatric Nurse II is the journey-level class in this series. Incumbents perform the full range of psychiatric nursing duties. Work assignments require a thorough knowledge of mental health practices and procedures, laws and regulations, the ability to work independently, and involve team leader responsibility over other nursing and mental health workers.

Psychiatric Nurse I/II: Under general supervision, provides professional psychiatric nursing care to acutely and chronically ill patients; performs related duties as required.

Program Options: Candidates may select and/or be assigned to one of the following programs per the needs of the department:

  • Adult Services

  • Children's Services

  • Crisis and Triage Services

  • Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU)

  • Psychiatric Health Facility (PHF)

  • The ACT Model Program

NOTE: For program details refer to the supplemental questionnaire.

The Ideal Candidate will:

  • Have excellent oral and written communication.

  • Work with clients diagnosed with severe and persistent mental illness.

  • Work as part of a multi-disciplinary team.

  • Have proficient computer skills in Microsoft Office.

  • Have experience with electronic health records.

  • Have the ability to read, write, converse fluently in English and Spanish (preferred for some positions)

  • Have experience in a psychiatric facility or community mental health program (when applying for a position at the psychiatric health facility).

The candidate selected may have to travel between North and South County work sites; a valid California Class C driver's license is required at the time of appointment.


  • Vacation: 12 to 25 days per year depending on length of public employment.

  • Holidays: 12 days per year.

  • Sick Leave: 12 days sick leave per year. Unlimited accumulation, one year of which can be converted to service credit upon retirement.

  • Health Plan: Choice of medical and dental plans (with vision care). County contributes toward the employee's premium.

  • On-Site Employee Health Clinics in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria: Provides ongoing and episodic services to eligible employees and their eligible dependents over age 15.

For more information on County of Santa Barbara benefits click on the Benefits Tab above or visit:

Applicants from other public sector employers may qualify for:

  • Retirement reciprocity

  • Time and service credit towards an advanced vacation accrual rate

Examples of Duties

  • Observes assigned patients on a daily basis to identify, interpret, and document physical and emotional status and/or patterns, such as assaultive or suicidal behavior, and response to treatment or medication; as part of a multi-disciplinary team, assists in formulating a diagnosis and developing and implementing individualized patient treatment plans based on observations; provides crisis intervention to those individuals experiencing acute episodes.

  • Participates in or leads individual or group counseling sessions, family conferences, and recreational and social therapy sessions to assist patients in understanding the nature of emotional and physical problems, to accept the need for treatment, and to address issues such as communicable disease and family planning; participates in departmental and team meetings to discuss patient care and progress, shift activity, and program policies and procedures.

  • Administers psychotropic medications to patients, monitors use, and documents reactions; instructs patients on the purpose, dosage, and side effects of medication, and explains the legal process related to the patient's refusal to take prescribed medication.

  • Obtains medical, psychiatric, social, and family histories of new admissions; takes and records vital signs; obtains lab specimens; assists physicians with exams; schedules and arranges for special tests; develops discharge plans; maintains charts and logs; monitors supplies; performs catheterizations and enemas; and draws blood.

  • Aids patients in obtaining proper medical care, after release or during hospitalization, by identifying community agencies and resources to assist patients with stabilization while living in the community; interacts with private medical facilities, courts, and county and State agencies to express concerns of the patient and to discuss treatment; testifies in court as to the patient's mental and physical condition.

Employment Standards

In order to be considered for this position, applicants must provide detailed information on their application to demonstrate how they meet the employment standards (minimum qualifications) listed below:

Possession of a valid Registered Nurse license issued by the California State Board of Registered Nursing.

ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATIONS: The ability to read, write, and converse fluently in English and Spanish may be required for some positions. Note: If you indicated on your application that you are bilingual, Human Resources will place you on the employment list for a job requiring bilingual skills. Hiring departments may test you on your fluency. If you do not demonstrate sufficient fluency, your name may be withheld from future certifications.

Knowledge of: the principles, practices, and laws of professional nursing; health education, interviewing, and counseling techniques; common illnesses, diseases, disabilities, injuries, and nutrition; use and effects of general medications and immunizations; community health and social services.

Ability to: understand and explain mental health laws and regulations; learn the various methods, techniques, and procedures used in psychiatric nursing; learn the uses and effects of psychotropic drugs and narcotics; learn patient safety practices and facility security; observe and learn to recognize the behavior patterns of emotionally disturbed and mentally ill patients; learn the theories, principles, and techniques of group and individual psychotherapy; evaluate and assess the need for mental health services; analyze a situation and adopt a course of action; prepare and maintain medical records and reports; recognize and respect limits of confidential information; communicate with people of diverse socioeconomic and ethnic origins; speak before groups; exercise independent judgment in

medical emergencies; demonstrate tact, diplomacy, patience, and compassion; establish and maintain working relationships with co-workers, other agencies, and organizations; comply with nursing policies, protocols, and program regulations; understand and follow instructions; work independently.

Working Conditions:

  • Work in both office and clinical settings.

  • Maybe required to work evening, night, or weekend shifts for specific assignments.

  • Willingness and ability to serve clients of various cultural, physical, behavioral and psychological profiles.

  • Incumbents may work in a locked facility with patients who can be a danger to themselves or others.

Fingerprinting for the purpose of a criminal record check as authorized by Section 16501 of the California Welfare and Institutions Code and Section 11105.3 of the California Penal Code may be required for some positions. Supplemental Information


  • Review applications and supplemental questionnaire to determine those applicants who meet the employment standards.

  • Supplemental Questionnaire Ranking: Candidates' response to the required supplemental questionnaire will be evaluated and scored. Candidates' final score and rank on the employment list will be determined by their responses to the supplemental questionnaire. This process may be eliminated if there are fewer than eleven (11) qualified candidates.

Applicants must receive a percentage score of at least 70 on the supplemental questionnaire to be placed on an employment list. An adjustment may be made to raw scores based on factors listed in Civil Service Rule VI. Those candidates who are successful in the selection process will have their names placed on the employment list for a minimum of three months. At the time the employment list is established, all candidates will receive written notice of their score on the exam(s), rank on the employment list, and exact duration of the employment list.

Conditional Job Offer: Once a conditional offer of employment has been made, candidate will be required to successfully complete a background check, which includes a conviction history check, and satisfactory reference checks. Appointee will be subject to a post-offer medical evaluation or examination. The appointee must satisfactorily complete a one-year probationary period.

Veteran's Preference Points: Veteran's preference credit is applicable for this recruitment (5 points for veterans, 10 points for disabled veterans). To be eligible for this credit, you must be applying for this position within five years from your most recent date of: (1) honorable discharge from active military service; or, (2) discharge from a military or veterans' hospital where treatment and confinement were for a disability incurred during active military service; or, (3) completion of education or training funded by a Federal Educational Assistance Act. No time limit exists for veterans with 30% or more disability. To receive veteran's preference points, you must: (1) check the Veteran's Preference Points box on the employment application form, (2) submit a copy of your Form DD214 to the Human Resources Department on or before the test date, and (3) pass all phases of the examination process. The preference points will be added to your final test score.

Recruiters will communicate with applicant by e-mail during each step in the recruitment process. Applicants are reminded to check spam filters continuously during the Recruitment & Selection Process steps listed above to ensure they do not miss required deadlines.

The County of Santa Barbara is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to applicants. Qualified individuals with disabilities who need a reasonable accommodation during the application or selection process should contact the recruiter listed on the job posting. We require verification of needed accommodation from a professional source, such as a Medical Provider or a learning institution.

The County of Santa Barbara is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) who believes a diverse workforce is vital to upholding its mission. Recruiting efforts are designed to find, hire and retain top talent of various background and, experiences. We believe a diverse workgroup promotes productivity and cultural acceptance where differences are embraced and encouraged.

APPLICATION AND SUPPLEMENTAL QUESTIONNAIRE DEADLINE: Applications received by May 14, 2021 at 4:59 PM PST. Applications and job bulletins can be obtained 24 hours a day at

Roderick Wells, Behavioral Wellness Recruiting Manager,

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Psychiatric Nurse I/Ii

Santa Barbara County, CA