Mental Health

Psychiatric Treatment Team

Who treats psychiatric disorders?

Mental health disorders are complex and require clinical care by a multidisciplinary treatment team. Team members may include the following:

  • Child and adolescent psychiatrist. These are licensed medical doctors (MD or DO). They specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating mental disorders in children and teens. Their medical and psychiatric training with children and teens prepares them to treat individuals, families, or groups. These providers can prescribe medicines if needed.

  • Psychiatrist. These are licensed medical doctors (MD or DO). They specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating mental disorders. They treat adults and children as individuals, families, or in groups. They can prescribe medicines if advised.

  • Psychologist. These are licensed mental health providers (PhD or PsyD). They specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating mental disorders. Training prepares clinical psychologists to treat adults and children as individuals, families, or in groups. Psychologists also conduct cognitive, academic, and personality testing.

  • Social worker. Social workers (bachelors- masters-, or doctoral-level) often work with the child and family. They do case management and help the family reach the long- and short-term treatment goals made by your child's healthcare team. They can also help you find and access community resources.

  • Licensed clinical social worker (LCSW). This is a masters- or doctoral-level clinical provider. They have extensive educational background and skills in different forms of psychotherapy. This includes individual, family, and group counseling. They are licensed to do several forms of psychotherapy with your child and family as needed.

  • Advanced practice psychiatric nurse. Psychiatric-Mental Health Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) are masters- or doctoral-level prepared psychiatric nurses. They specialize in mental health nursing. These nurses may be clinical specialists (CNS) or nurse practitioners (NP). They specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating mental health disorders of all ages. They are educated and licensed to treat adults individually, as a family, and also as a group. Some also treat children. They do therapy. They prescribe medicines if needed and manage their use.

  • Pharmacists. These are licensed health professionals with special training in preparing and dispensing prescription medicine. Pharmacists have been taught how medicines work, how to use them, and their side effects. They can monitor new prescriptions and how they may interact with medicines you are already taking. They can also help you understand your medicines.

Online Medical Reviewer: L Renee Watson MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Marianne Fraser MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Paul Ballas MD
Date Last Reviewed: 2/1/2023
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