2023 Guide on Best Mental Health Intake Practices with Free Mental Health Intake Form PDF & Word


2023 Mental Health Intake Guide with Printable Mental Health Intake Form Template

Disclaimer

As you are aware, mental health intake assessment plays a vital role in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health conditions. The information clients provide in the mental health intake form ultimately helps mental health professionals determine the best and most effective treatment plan for each individual.

In this Social Work Portal article, we will take a deep dive into everything you need to know about mental health intake sessions, mental health intake form, mental health intake assessment example questions, and much more.

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Mental Health Intake Guide with Free Mental Health Intake Form Template (PDF & Word)

Additionally, if you’re looking for a free printable mental health intake assessment template that you can leverage for your needs, you’re in luck. Read on to get your free mental health intake form PDF and Word.

However, if you prefer working in one centralized place that holds all your clients and cases – and saves you a lot of time – Social Work Portal Case Management Hub is an ideal solution for you.

Subscribe today and get instant access to pre-made intake templates for therapists that you can customize to your needs, streamlining your workflow and maximizing your efficiency.

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Would you like to share feedback on our mental health intake form free resources? Are there any free psychotherapy forms that have provided great value to you that we can include in this guide for other practitioners to leverage? If so, contact the Social Work Portal Team.


Table of Contents: Initial Intake Assessment Mental Health Process

Keep on scrolling down this page to read each section or click any link below to go directly to that section.

  1. Introduction to Mental Health Intake Assessment
  2. Mental Health Intake Assessment Example
  3. Mental Health Form Variations by Specialization
    1. General Mental Health Intake Form
    2. Psychologist Intake Form
    3. Psychiatric Intake Template Form
    4. Behavioral Health Intake Form
  4. Mental Health Intake Assessment Example Questions
  5. Mental Health Intake Form Free PDF & Word Templates
  6. Conclusion | Mental Health Intake Best Practices
  7. FAQ | Mental Health Intake Assessment

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Would you like to share feedback on psychologist intake forms? Are there any free mental health assessment forms that have provided great value to you that we can include in this guide for other mental health professionals to leverage? If so, contact the Social Work Portal Team.


Mental Health Intake Session | Mental Health Intake Assessment

The mental health intake session is a crucial step in the process of seeking mental health treatment.

During this initial intake assessment mental health session, a mental health professional will use a mental health intake form to gather important information about the individual’s mental and emotional health, including their symptoms, history of mental health treatment, and any relevant medical and family history.

Furthermore, the initial intake assessment mental health session will also include various techniques, interviews and mental health intake questions, behavioral observations, and standardized questionnaires which help the mental health professional make an accurate diagnosis, develop a treatment plan, and determine the best course of action for the individual’s specific needs.

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Initial Intake Assessment Mental Health Session

Mental health intake session provides an opportunity for the individual to discuss their concerns and goals for treatment with the mental health professional. This open dialogue enables the mental health professional to gain a deeper understanding of the individual’s experiences and provide tailored support to meet their specific needs.

The mental health intake session is an essential step in ensuring that individuals receive the appropriate mental health care they need to manage their symptoms and improve their overall well-being.

This process can be made a lot easier and quicker with the help of our case and client management software. 

Social Work Portal Case Management Hub comes equipped with a suite of pre-made intake and assessment templates designed specifically for therapists and mental health practitioners, so you can quickly and easily capture all the necessary information and get back to what you do best – helping your clients.

Sign up for SWP Case Management Hub now and experience the ease and convenience of our cloud-based tools for therapists.

For all the above-mentioned reasons, it is vitally important that mental health professionals make the most of the initial intake assessment mental health session and set the right tone for future sessions. 

Next, in the sections below we will go over the mental health intake assessment example so you get a good understanding of how best to complete this assessment.

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Mental Health Intake Form | Mental Health Intake Assessment Example

How you use a mental health intake form will vary depending on a specific type of specialization or services that mental health professionals provide to their clients.  However, at a minimum, every mental health intake form template will contain the following pieces of information:

  • Personal information: Name, gender, address, phone numbers, email, occupation, marital status, and education level.
  • Medical history: Any relevant medical conditions, past and current medications, and any surgeries or hospitalizations, as well as any history of allergies, chronic pain, or physical disabilities.
  • Mental health history: A full history of mental health diagnosis and treatment, including therapy, medication, and hospitalization, as well as any history of self-harm, suicide attempts, or trauma.
  • Substance use: Information about any past or current substance use, including alcohol, drugs, and nicotine, as well as any history of addiction or substance abuse treatment.
  • Family history: A family history of mental illness and any related genetic conditions, as well as any history of abuse, neglect, or trauma within the family.
  • Symptoms: A detailed description of current mental health symptoms, including frequency, intensity, and impact on daily life, as well as any physical symptoms that may be related to mental health.
  • Functioning: Information about daily functioning, including work, social, and family life, as well as any difficulty with daily activities, such as eating, sleeping, or self-care.
  • Psychological testing: Any results from psychological assessments, such as IQ tests or personality assessments.
  • Goals for treatment: The individual’s specific goals for treatment and their expectations for therapy, as well as any specific concerns or fears about therapy.
  • Treatment preferences: Any preferences for treatment, including the type of therapy and medication, as well as any specific treatment modalities, such as cognitive behavioral therapy or psychodynamic therapy.
  • Release of information: Authorization to release information to other health care providers or family members, as well as any specific limitations on the information that can be shared.
    Social Work Portal’s free HIPAA medical release form – in PDF and Word format, can be downloaded to use for your practice needs.
  • Signature: A signature indicating that the information provided is accurate and consent is given for treatment, as well as a date and time.

This list provides a comprehensive overview of the type of information that may be included in a mental health intake form. It is important to note that every mental health intake form will vary and may not necessarily include all of these items.

Additionally, the information required on the mental health intake form may vary depending on the jurisdiction and the specific needs of the mental health professional or practice.

If you’re looking to streamline your intake and assessment process and save time, you’re going to love our easy-to-use client and case management software.

With pre-made assessment and intake templates, as well as the ability to create your own forms from scratch, you can easily track and send forms to your clients without the hassle.

Sign up for SWP Case Management Hub Platform and see the difference it can make for your practice!

With that in mind, don’t forget to consult your state laws and regulations to ensure that the mental health intake assessment template you’re planning on using is compliant with all relevant rules and regulations.

If you’re looking for a therapy and mental health intake assessment example or a free printable mental health intake form template that you could leverage in your practice, read on. We have an amazing downloadable therapy & mental health intake form PDF and Word that you don’t want to miss out on.

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Do you have any questions about the free mental health intake form template provided in this article? Do you have any other mental health intake forms free resources that you’d like to share? If so, contact the Social Work Portal Team.


Types of Mental Health Intake Form | Psychiatric Intake, Psychological Intake, Behavioral Health Intake, etc.

Different types of mental health professionals will use different mental health intake forms to learn more about their clients.

This initial intake assessment mental health session will vary from therapist to therapist based on their specialization.

For example, a psychological intake done by a psychologist will be different than a psychiatric intake done by a psychiatrist. Therefore, the psychiatric intake template will look slightly different than the psychologist intake forms and templates.

Don’t let this scare you! While at first, it may seem like a lot of different forms, the majority of information required in mental health forms will be very similar. Based on the mental health practitioner’s specialization and the scope of therapy some sections may vary.


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In the sections below, we will give you a brief overview so you can get a good idea of the main variations you may encounter based on the mental health specialization or type of therapy.

  1. General Mental Health Intake Form

General mental health intake form is a comprehensive tool used to gather information about an individual’s mental health history, current symptoms, and overall well-being.

This form is general in scope and can be used by a wide range of mental health professionals in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, and private practices.

Depending on your specialization and needs, this type of mental health intake form can be fitted and customized to fit psychiatric intake, psychological intake, etc.

If you’re looking to find a great free medical intake form template that you can adjust to fit your specific needs, you’ll find it further down in this Social Work Portal article.

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  1. Psychological Intake Form

Psychological intake form is a specific type of mental health intake form used by psychologists during the psychological intake session to gather information about an individual’s overall mental health and functioning.

Psychological intake form will include questions about the individual’s current symptoms, personal & family mental health history, and overall mental well-being.

Psychologist intake forms will typically require:

  • Medical and psychiatric history such as the client’s previous medical conditions, current medications, and any previous psychiatric treatment.
  • Family history includes any history of mental health conditions that run in the family.
  • Developmental history such as information on the client’s early childhood, education, and work history.
  • Client’s current symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, mood changes, or sleep problems.
  • Functioning information such as the client’s daily activities, work, relationships, and leisure activities ad hobbies.
  • Treatment goals such as the client’s goals for therapy, reducing symptoms, improving relationships, or increasing overall well-being.

The information gathered from the psychological intake form helps psychologists diagnose mental health conditions and develop treatment plans that are custom tailored to each client.

Psychologist intake forms will vary from one practitioner to another, and most professionals will make adjustments to their psychological intake form to best accommodate clients’ unique needs.

Those mental health practitioners that prefer using software to stay organized and on top of all tasks may be interested in SWP’s Case Management Platform.

It may be time to say goodbye to paperwork and hello to more time with our user-friendly case management software. Sign up today and experience the benefits for yourself!

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Is there a free medical intake form template every mental health professional should use? Do you have any tips about valuable mental health intake form free sources in general? Click here to contact the Social Work Portal Team.


  1. Psychiatric Intake

Psychiatric intake form is used by psychiatrists to gather information about a client’s background, current symptoms, and treatment goals.

A psychiatric intake template typically includes the following topics:

  • Medical history such as the client’s previous medical conditions and current medications they’re taking.
  • Psychiatric history that includes information about the client’s previous psychiatric treatment, including any hospitalizations, therapy, and medications.
  • Family history that includes information about the client’s family members, including any history of mental health conditions.
  • Current symptoms information such as the client’s current symptoms, including depression, mood swings, irritability, anxiety, or sleep problems.
  • Substance abuse such as the client’s use of alcohol, drugs, and other substances.
  • Functioning information that pertains to the client’s everyday activities, work, relationships, and leisure activities.
  • Treatment goals include information about the client’s goals for treatment, such as reducing symptoms, improving functioning, or addressing substance use issues.

In addition to the information outlined above, a psychiatric intake form or psychiatric intake template may also include questions about the client’s appetite, energy levels, and mood swings. The form may also ask about any current stressors in the client’s life and any recent changes in behavior or mood.

The psychiatric intake form is a critical tool in helping psychiatrists diagnose and treat mental health conditions. It not only provides a comprehensive overview of the client’s mental health, but it also helps guide the treatment process.

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If you’re looking for a psychiatric intake form PDF, read on to find a free mental health intake form template that you can utilize for your practice.

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Do you have any insight on what the best psychiatric intake form PDF should contain? Do you know of any free psychotherapy forms or psychiatric intake form PDF that you would like to share? Click here to contact the Social Work Portal Team.


  1. Behavioral Health Intake Form

Behavioral health intake form is used to gather information about a client’s mental health, behavioral health, and medical history.

A behavioral health intake form is used by a variety of mental health providers, including social workers, therapists, and counselors, who provide behavioral health services.

A behavioral health intake form typically includes the following topics:

  • Medical history such as any information about the client’s previous medical conditions and current medications.
  • Behavioral health history that includes information about the client’s previous treatment for behavioral health conditions, such as therapy, hospitalizations, and medications.
  • Substance use such as any information about the client’s use of alcohol, drugs, and other substances.
  • Mental health symptoms will include any information about the client’s current symptoms, such as depression, anxiety, or sleep problems.
  • Functioning information such as the client’s daily activities, work, relationships, exercise routine, and leisure activities.
  • Treatment goals such as information about the client’s goals for treatment, reducing symptoms, improving functioning, or addressing substance use issues.

In addition to the information provided above, a behavioral health intake form may also include questions about the client’s family history of mental health conditions, as well as their cultural and religious background. This information can help the behavioral health professional to understand the client’s support system and to provide care that is sensitive to their individual needs.

This information can help to identify any factors that may be contributing to the client’s symptoms or affecting their mental and behavioral health.

Information provided in the behavioral health intake form is used by behavioral health professionals to make informed decisions about treatment and to monitor the client’s progress over time.

On top of that, it also helps ensure that treatment is tailored to the client’s specific needs and goals and that care is provided comprehensively and holistically.

If you’re looking for free mental health assessment forms to help you in your mental health practice, don’t miss our comprehensive mental health intake form PDF that can be used by therapists, counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other health professionals.

Prefer to take care of your intakes and assessments in cloud-based software?

Case Management Hub is the right solution for you. With premade assessment and intake templates, or the ability to create your own from scratch, you can effortlessly send and track forms to clients and capture all the important information

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Mental Health Intake Questions | Mental Health Intake Assessment Example Questions

Mental health intake questions are an important tool that helps mental health professionals assess the client’s symptoms, understand their life situation, and gather the information that will determine and impact further treatment decisions.

Every mental health professional should ask a number of core questions during a mental health intake.

Regardless of whether it is a psychiatric intake template, psychological intake template, behavioral health intake form, or any other mental health intake assessment, there will be certain mental health intake questions that mental health professionals will ask.


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Mental Health Intake Assessment Example Questions

Mental health intake example questions that any mental health professional will ask are:

  • What are your current symptoms? (Tell me about the duration, frequency, and severity of the symptoms.)
  • How have your symptoms affected your daily life?
  • Are the symptoms affecting your work, relationships, and daily activities?
  • Can you tell me about your medical history? (Share any previous diagnoses, treatments, and medications taken in the past.)
  • Have you received treatment for mental health concerns in the past? (What type of treatment did you receive? What was the outcome of the treatment?)
  • Do you have a history of substance use? (Alcohol, illegal drugs, prescription drugs, etc.)
  • Can you tell me about your current life situation? (What are the recent stressors in your life? What change occurred that caused the stress?)
  • How would you describe your current stress level?
  • Are you experiencing any physical symptoms? (Are you pain, fatigue, digestive issues, etc.)
  • How is your sleep? (How’s your quality of sleep? How much do you sleep on average? Are you experiencing sleep disruptions?)
  • Can you describe your support system? (Such as family, friends, community, etc.)
  • Are you experiencing any thoughts of self-harm or suicide?
  • Have you experienced any traumatic events in the past? (Bring up any emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, etc.)
  • Do you have any cultural or religious beliefs that impact your mental health?
  • What are your goals for treatment? (Are you looking to reduce symptoms, improve functioning, address substance uses issues, etc.?)

These are just some of the many mental health intake questions that psychologists, psychiatrists, and other mental health professionals will be asking.

For comprehensive intake and assessment templates that you can adjust and use in your therapy practice, check out Social Work Portal’s client and case management platform. One centralized place for all your therapy practice needs.

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Experienced mental health professionals typically consider each individual’s unique needs and goals to tailor the mental health intake questions as well as the therapy plan.

If you’re in search of mental health intake forms free resource that covers and addresses the majority of the mental health questions mentioned in this section, it’s your lucky day.

In the section below, you can find a free printable mental health intake form template that can be used by counselors, therapists, and other mental health professionals.


Note: Content on socialworkportal.com website is copyrighted. 
Disclaimer: Content on this website is provided for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute providing medical advice or professional services. The information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, and those seeking personal medical advice should consult with... Read our full disclaimer here: Social Work Portal Disclaimer.
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Free Mental Health Intake Form Template | Mental Health Intake Form PDF & Word

If you are looking for mental health intake assessment template or free mental health assessment forms in general, Social Work Portal has got you covered. Below you can find a generic printable mental health intake form template PDF and Word that you can download for free and adjust to best suit your specialization.

Please note that this free mental health intake form template does not constitute legal advice. Our blank downloadable & printable mental health intake form template is for educational purposes only.

This mental health intake form PDF and Word can be used by counselors, therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and other mental health professionals. Before using, you should also review all the form fields and other details used in our Word and PDF free mental health assessment forms, and adjust as needed.

Social Work Portal Free Mental Health Intake Form
PDF & Word

free mental health intake form

View Our Free Social Work Tools and Download Your Printable Mental Health Intake Form Template (Word & PDF Versions)

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Do you have feedback on our mental health intake forms free Word & PDF? Do you have insight into the best free mental health assessment forms that you would like to share with other practitioners? If so, contact the Social Work Portal Team.


Conclusion | Mental Health Intake Best Practices

The best practices for mental health intake are essential for ensuring that individuals receive quality care and support for their mental health needs.

Best practices include a thorough assessment process that considers both physical and mental health, open and effective communication, the use of standardized assessments, the incorporation of cultural and individualized approaches, and the documentation of all relevant information.

We hope that this Social Work Portal guide on best practices in psychiatric intake, psychological intake, behavioral health intake, along with the mental health intake assessment example and free mental health intake form template have been useful to you.

If you’re looking for the perfect tools to stay on track of all your intakes, assessments, and correspondence with your clients and staff – subscribe to Case Management Hub software.

However, if you still have any questions about our mental health intake assessment template or mental health intake in general, Social Work Portal team is always here to help you.

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FAQ | Mental Health Intake Assessment

What does a mental health intake assessment template contain?

A mental health intake assessment template usually contains the following information:

•Personal Information: name, date of birth, contact information, etc.
•Reason for seeking therapy or counseling
•Medical and psychiatric history
•Substance use history
•Family history
•Trauma and abuse history
•Current symptoms and concerns
•Functioning in daily life, including work, social, and familial relationships
•Treatment history
•Medications
•Current stressors
•Treatment goals

What are the commonly asked mental health intake assessment example questions?

Some of the most commonly asked questions are:

•What are your current symptoms?
•How have your symptoms affected your daily life?
•Can you tell me about your medical history?
•Have you received treatment for mental health concerns in the past?
•Do you have a history of substance use?
•Can you tell me about your current life situation?
•How would you describe your current stress level?
•Are you experiencing any physical symptoms?
•Are you experiencing any thoughts of self-harm or suicide?
•What are your goals for treatment?

Is there a free mental health intake form that I can use in my practice?

Yes, Social Work Portal offers a mental health intake form free PDF and Word versions that you can alter and adjust to fit your specific mental health specialization.


Note: Content on Social Works socialworkportal.com website is copyrighted. 
Social Work Portal Disclaimer: Social Work Portal is not a social work agency and we do not refer social workers. This web site is provided for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute providing medical advice or professional services. The information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, and those seeking personal medical advice should consult with ... Read our full disclaimer here: Social Work Portal Disclaimer.

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