7 Best Healthcare Jobs in the Mental Health Field

female mental healthcare professional talking with student patient at job

Mental healthcare professionals advocate for mental well-being, one patient at a time. Plus, the best jobs in the mental health field can bring ongoing career fulfillment, make a lasting healthcare difference, and even save lives.

The need for jobs in the mental health field is growing faster than ever as we become more aware of its importance. So, in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month this May, let’s shine a light on some of the best healthcare jobs and opportunities in the field!

Why Mental Health Offers Some of the Best Healthcare Jobs

There’s an Increasing Demand

Today, the need for mental health services continues to rise due to increased awareness and reduced stigma around mental health. For healthcare professionals, this can mean job security and flexibility when choosing from some of the best healthcare jobs.

You Can Change Lives

Working in mental health can be incredibly rewarding. You’ll have the opportunity to transform the lives of individuals and families, as you witness real change and improvements.

There are Options for Everyone

There are several jobs in the mental health field for nurses, therapists, and allied health professionals alike. You can work directly with patients, perform research, and develop care plans — the options are endless!

Best Mental and Behavioral Health Jobs

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

What they do: Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSW) assess, diagnose, and treat mental health issues. They provide therapy and counseling and connect clients with community resources to support their mental and emotional well-being.

Unlike traditional social workers, LCSWs can provide direct clinical mental health services to patients without supervision. LCSWs have both a master’s degree in social work and state-specific LCSW licensure.

Average pay: LCSW is one of the best healthcare jobs in the mental health field. LCSWs earn a median salary of $80,454/year or $39/hour as of April 2024.

This typically ranges from $73,701-$88,980/year or $35-$43/hour but can vary depending on your location, education, certifications, and experience.

School Psychologist

What they do: School psychologists perform psych evaluations, create intervention plans, and provide counseling and support services to students. They often work with teachers and parents to address behavioral and learning challenges and advocate for the mental health needs of students.

Average pay: School psychologists earn a median salary of $84,940/year or $40.84/hour as of May 2023.

However, their average pay can vary from $70,520-$107,400/year or $33.91-$51.64/hour depending on location, school type, and level of education. The highest-paid school psychologists work within child care services, offices of health practitioners, educational or employment support services, and elementary or secondary schools.

Psych Nurse Jobs

What they do: Psychiatric nursing is one of the best healthcare jobs for nurses passionate about helping individuals with mental or behavioral health disorders.

Psych nurses administer medications, monitor patients, assist with therapeutic interventions, and provide mental health care education. In addition, they can work in psychiatric hospitals, outpatient centers, schools, correctional facilities, private practices, and more.

Average pay: The median salary for registered psych nurses is $84,400/year or $54/hour as of April 2024. This can typically range from $77,200-$95,300/year or $37-51/hour based on your location, facility, and certifications.

Psych LVN/LPNs also hold some of the best healthcare jobs in the mental health field. They can earn a high salary, averaging $66,560/year or $32/hour.

Clinical Psychologist

What they do: Clinical psychologists conduct assessments to diagnose and treat mental health disorders. Additionally, they can offer psychotherapy and counseling, develop treatment plans, and conduct psychological research.

Average pay: Clinical psychologists earned a median salary of $96,100/year or $46.20/hour in 2023. This has one of the widest pay ranges of jobs in the mental health field at $66,050-$129,020/year or $31.75-$62.03/hour, varying based on facility, education, and experience.

Mental Health Coordinator Jobs

What they do: Mental health coordinators oversee and develop mental health programming and policies within organizations, such as schools, hospitals, or any healthcare facility. They collaborate with different team members to follow the plan, meet objectives, and effectively use resources to promote quality mental health care access.

Arguably, this is one of the best healthcare jobs in the mental health field for those looking for a non-traditional, non-bedside role.

Average pay: Mental health coordinators’ salary ranges from $75,029-$90,004/year or $36-$43/hour, at an average salary of $81,364/year or $39/hour as of April 2024.

Mental Health Counselor

What they do: Mental health counselors provide empathetic support and evidence-based therapy to individuals, couples, families, and groups. They help patients navigate life’s challenges, develop coping skills, and improve their mental well-being.

Average pay: Mental health, substance abuse, and behavioral disorder counselors make a median salary of$53,710/year or $25.82/hour as of May 2023. This ranges from $44,600-$70,130/year or $21.44-$33.71/hour based on your location, facility, and education.

Like most jobs in the mental health field, they’re growing in demand: Mental health counselors have an 18% job outlook!

Registered Behavior Technician Jobs

What they do: Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) typically work with patients diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or other developmental disabilities. Each day, they work directly with individuals to teach positive behaviors while treating disruptive behaviors.

Average pay: RBTs earn an average salary of $72,864/year or $35/hour in 2024, often ranging from $64,666-$78,571/year or $31-$38/hour based on location, education, certifications, and experience. Therefore, this makes it one of the best healthcare jobs in the mental health field for those looking for roles that don’t require high-level degrees.

Find the Best Healthcare Jobs in Mental & Behavioral Health

Ready to explore the best jobs in the mental health field? Start your job search now with CareerStaff, featuring local, travel, and per diem healthcare jobs across the U.S.A.

Search healthcare jobs nationwide now, or Quick Apply below to connect with a dedicated recruiter and unlock the best opportunities in the mental health field.