Homeless & Drugs Services


Job Title:                           Mental Health Case Worker – Open Access Services

Responsible to:               The Head of Day Services through the Service Coordinator

Reporting to:                   Health Service Coordinator

Responsible for:             The management of mental health support services across MQI

Objective:                         To effectively deliver MQI mental health support services, and in doing so to uphold the philosophy and working ethos of Merchants Quay Ireland

Main Responsibilities

  • In partnership with Heads of Service/Service Co-Ordinators, and as part of multidisciplinary support to clients experiencing homelessness and/or substance misuse problems, take responsibility for all aspects of the delivery of mental health supports to MQI service users.
  • To develop links and build effective working relationships with the appropriate statutory and voluntary agencies to ensure access to services for the client group using MQI services.
  • To address the needs of our clients including those in crisis, recovery, and drug free by effectively building relationships and working in partnership with other services within and outside of MQI.
  • To support the presenting needs of clients, to manage relationships with external agencies and partners of the mental health service including St James Hospital, other hospitals as required, GP’s, researchers, other mental health professionals in homeless and drug services.
  • To liaise with the appropriate external services, statutory and non-statutory services and the Head of Day Services regarding clinical governance issues and to engage with the management team, GP’s and staff regarding clinical governance policy and practice.
  • To work closely with the general nursing staff working in Open Access.
  • To assist medical professionals and project workers who are addressing the mental health issues of clients in crisis or as part of an on-going care plan.
  • Monitor and support staff case management ensuring that all relevant documentation is completed, and that links are being made with the appropriate internal and external services, while ensuring that a consistently high standard of care plans, key working, assessments, and referrals are being carried out in line with the aims of the service.
  • To contribute actively to appropriate fora (team meetings, case conferences, and multidisciplinary meetings) in identifying, planning, and addressing the mental needs of our clients.
  • To deliver training to staff on topics related to mental health e.g. specific mental illness, diagnosis, suicidal ideation, referral to community mental health teams.
  • To assist with any incidents and emergencies which occur within the service particularly related to clients with mental health issues.  Ensuring that they are brought to a satisfactory conclusion within the framework of MQI policies and to record details of such incidents as appropriate.
  • To ensure that assessments are carried out and individual care plans are devised and regularly reviewed by staff in consultation and agreement with the service users.
  • In collaboration with the management team, to support and liaise with external agencies on specific projects e.g. research, Mental Health legislation and conference presentations.
  • To ensure a safe and secure environment and maintain high standards of care for clients and staff alike.
  • To assist the Service Coordinator in the ongoing development of appropriate staffing structures and service policies and procedures to enable a high-quality service delivery to service users.
  • To undertake an ongoing review/assessment of care practices in response to client needs.
  • To participate in service reviews and evaluations and to implement any changes arising from such work.


  • To formulate a care plan (or to work within an existing care plan) in consultation with the client and project worker along with other relevant professionals such as GP, psychiatrist, or community mental health team.
  • To oversee the mental health welfare of service users and ensure that their needs are attended to with sensitivity and efficiency.
  • To regularly engage with and build a professional relationship with clients treating them with respect and ensure that values of MQI are upheld.
  • To work with homeless and drug-using clients to ensure that they are linked in with the appropriate supports e.g. needle exchange or case work.
  • Building supportive relationships across the MQI services for our clients with mental health needs.
  • To ensure that the practical needs of the service users are met, in consultation with the clients and with the support of the staff team.
  • To when, and wherever possible, involve and include service users in the ongoing development of the service and to have their participation built into service plans when feasible.
  • To provide a high standard of service ensuring client satisfaction as it pertains to MQI and its Charter of Rights including a prompt resolution to complaints within a specific timeframe.
  • To implement service policy and procedures in conjunction with the team to ensure appropriate service delivery.


  • To provide support, supervision and performance appraisal to the staff, CE, volunteers, and placements assigned to work in the mental health area.
  • To assess the training and development needs of the staff that you supervise and to input to the annual training plan to be agreed with the Head of Day Services.
  • To assist in the recruitment and interviewing of staff and volunteers in conjunction with your line manager where appropriate.


  • Produce standard monthly and quarterly reports to the Head of Day Services/Executive Team in terms of them responding to funding agencies and to compile any ad hoc information requests relating to your service area which might be required by the Executive.
  • The collection of data including information relating to the Quality framework and production of relevant statistics and reports to inform the Executive Team and key stakeholders of the activities and treatment outcomes for service users of the mental health service.


  • To complete all administrative tasks such as report writing, collation of statistics maintenance of accurate nursing and medical records, up to date client case notes, relevant form filling to ensure that the service runs smoothly, safely and effectively.
  • To ensure that accurate and up-to-date records are kept by recording accurate and relevant information onto any appropriate forms, daybooks, client files and computer-based client databases (e.g. Salesforce.)
  • To adhere to GDPR requirements in relation to all appropriate paperwork and filing and storage of relevant data.

General Responsibilities

  • To communicate effectively in general and to maintain appropriate accountability to the Head of Day Services and the Executive Team.
  • To ensure that you have a clear understanding of all MQI policies and procedures and of the requirements of legislation, procedures and regulations governing our services.
  • To work within the policies, procedures, and guidelines of MQI to ensure a consistent delivery of a high-quality service and to actively contribute to the continued development of policies and standards related to the mental health service
  • To be up to date on recent developments, best practice, and quality standards as a nursing professional and in the context of delivery of nursing mental health services to clients.
  • To participate in internal and external meetings, training events and other functions as required
  • To have a flexible approach to the work in response to organisational change, development, and review of best practice
  • Reporting to the Service Coordinator or Lead for individual support, supervision, performance appraisal and working within the parameters of the MQI HR and H&S policies and procedures.
  • To ensure that Health & Safety standards are maintained in accordance with the H&S Statement of MQI and to attend H&S Committee Meetings.
  • Manage the delivery of all day-to-day operational functions of the mental health service
  • In conjunction with the Service Coordinator, continuously develop the role to ensure that all tasks are being undertaken in an effective and appropriate manner which meets the strategic aims and objectives of Merchant’s Quay Ireland.
  • To adhere to MQI’s Health and Safety Policy & Procedures and to be vigilant to any Health, Safety and Welfare risks in the workplace and bring any concerns to the attention of your line manager.
  • To work as part of a team with regular and consistent communication participating actively in all team meetings and supporting the ethos.

Person Specification

  • Relevant Level 7 social care or similar discipline qualification and a minimum two years’ experience of working within low threshold services, working directly with clients using a case management approach.
  • Vocational Qualification in Mental Health or working towards qualification.
  • Substance misuse knowledge/harm reduction, suicide, and self-harm awareness.
  • Understanding of the issues faced by service users with mental health and/or dual diagnosis challenges.
  • Demonstrable skills and knowledge in assessing risk presented by clients to themselves and others.
  • Ability to deliver a range of services in a person-centred non-judgemental manner.
  • Proven track record in/ability in managing incidents of verbal and violent aggression.
  • Awareness of current legislation and policy that impacts and influences service delivery, such as the Mental Health Act.
  • Proven verbal and written communication skills with the ability to tailor the message to the audience.
  • Collaborative Teamwork.
  • Able to work flexibly.
  • Adaptable and able to work in a challenging and changeable environment
  • Ability to deliver against agreed objectives and targets.
  • Recognising the indicators of deteriorating mental health, discussing, and agreeing the appropriate intervention to be proposed.
  • Working with service users to promote recovery and a more independent lifestyle.
  • Encouraging service users to recognise, understand and manage factors that affect their mental health wellbeing.

What does Merchants Quay Ireland offer as an employer?

  • Fulfilling and Challenging work
  • Competitive Salaries
  • Sick Pay Scheme
  • Flexible Working Arrangements
  • Minimum 23 days Annual Leave
  • Defined Contribution Pension Scheme (after 6 months)
  • Death In Service (from commencement of employment)
  • Line Management Supervision
  • Learning and Development Program
  • Group VHI Scheme
  • Paid Family Leave (Maternity, Paternity, Parental, Adoptive, Force Majeure and Compassionate Leave)
  • Educational Assistance (Study and Examination Leave, Scholarship Foundation)
  • Health & Wellness Programme and Employee Assistance Programme (EAP)

Contract:            Indefinite duration

Salary:                €30,000 to 37,800, dependent on experience

Hours:                 39 hrs per week

Location:            Open Access Service, Merchants Quay, Dublin 8

Please see the detailed job specification attached. If you are interested in applying for this position please complete the attached Application Form and send it with an updated copy of your CV to recruitment@mqi.ie before the closing date of October 20th 2021.

Employment Application Form REVISED Feb 2021