What is the Job of an Access Clinician

Access Clinician

Definition of an Access Clinician:

The Access clinician is responsible for receiving calls from the community regarding inquiries and requests for crisis services. They refer for admission to the Department of Behavioral Health inpatient units. In addition, they can provide accurate information regarding psychiatric services available both in the hospital and community.

Responsibilities of an Access Clinician:

Here are some of the responsibilities of an Access Clinician:

  • Responds to crisis calls from the community with accurate telephone assessment and triage to the most appropriate resource for more evaluation or follow-up. In Addition, ensures that safe transportation is arranged for cases that need emergent face-to-face evaluation. 
  • Documents crisis calls in agreement with Access Center policy and procedures.
  • Receives referrals for direct admission from other installations or for transfers from the inpatient units. Also, completes the pre-admission assessment in accord with Access Center policy and procedures. 
  • Checks all clinical aspects of each potential admission with the psychiatric attending physician. Furthermore, Identifies appropriate cases for inpatient treatment and coordinates a referral to the applicable inpatient service. 
  • Demonstrates the capability to engage and support cases in carrying out treatment effectively. 
  • Follows department programs and procedures about medical concurrence for all admissions. 
  • Checks insurance eligibility. Performs pre-certification process with insurance/ managed care companies and obtains proper authorization for the indicated level of care. 
  • Equals patient referrals from the Emergency Department with external extremity merchandisers to ensure timely evaluation and referral. This includes documentation of details such as contact, time, and ETA with external sellers. 
  • Equivalents the psychiatric consultation activities by damage, documentation, and announcement of requested psychiatric consults. Maintains accurate consult report for managing day-to-day reversal time—assistances in collaboration with psychiatric transfers from medicine. 
  • Provides follow-up to referring agencies, inpatient theaters, and family members when appropriate and in agreement with the policies of Behavioral Health regarding confidentiality. 
  • Provides a thorough clinical evaluation using DSM IV criteria to reach an accurate diagnosis. 

Additional Responsibilities of an Access Clinician:

  • Establishes a treatment plan by analyzing the clinical data as well as symptoms and through discussion with inpatient providers, managed care representatives, and other relative collateral connections. 
  • Checks all psychiatric or crisis evaluations with the psychiatric attending physician. 
  • Maintains responsibility for case collaboration until the case is transferred to another care position or is discharged. 
  • Equals a referral to the appropriate outpatient, inpatient, or self-help resources. 
  • Documents admission instructions on approved medical center forms and ensures compliance with NW documentation procedure.

These are some of the core responsibilities that a clinician has to perform. However, a few other behavioral characteristics are as important as these core responsibilities. These characteristics are not the core requirements of the job, but practicing them would surely help make the workplace a better place for everyone around you. These include soft skills such as being friendly, respect towards coworkers, attention to detail, critical thinking capabilities, and problem-solving.

Education and Training of an Access Clinician:

  • Master’s degree in Counseling. 
  • Counseling Psychology or Social Work.
  • One year of experience in an emergency or outpatient mental health setting. 
  • Two or more years of experience in an emergency mental health setting can replace a Master’s requirement along with a Bachelor’s degree in a related field.


Below we have compiled a list of the essential skills for an access clinician including behavior such as follows:

  • Interpersonal and communication skills.
  • The ability to handle multiple tasks.
  • Computer skills 
  • Critical thinker
  • Good Patient care
  • Patience & Stress management


The national average payment of access clinicians is $54,000 per year in the United States. So, they can earn $4,000 per month. However, the payment ranges can vary widely depending on many important factors. These factors include things such as education, certifications, additional skills, and the number of years you have spent in your profession.


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