Adapted from The Hills and NAMI Minnesota presentation at the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health 2018 Annual Conference

What is a Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility (PRTF)?

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid defines PRTF as a separate, stand-alone entity providing a range of comprehensive services to treat the psychiatric condition of residents on an inpatient basis under the direction of a physician: the purpose of the service is to improve the resident’s condition or prevent further regression so that services are no longer needed.

Characteristics of a PRTF

  • Inpatient Facility
  • Serves individuals ages 21 and under
    • The Hills will work with youth ages 7-17
  • A level of care utilized when:
    • Ambulatory care services in the community do not meet the needs of the youth
    • The individual requires 24-hour care with nursing under the direction of a physician
    • Services are reasonably expected to improve the condition or prevent further regression

What is the difference between Residential Treatment Centers (RTC) and a PRTF?



  • Provides rehabilitate services
  • Provides active treatment to treat acute symptoms
  • Individual and group treatment, recreational, and educational experiences
  • Highly intensive clinically supervised therapies
  • Mental Health professionals provide clinical oversight
  • Psychiatrist or other physician employed as medical director with 24 hour nursing
  • Medicaid for treatment only. County pays room and board through IVE
  • Medicaid pays for full per diem, including room and board
  • Youth may have child welfare or juvenile justice involvement
  • Youth have typically “failed” other types of services
  • Per diem rates set by host county – can be low making it difficult to add staff
  • Per diem rates set by state – making it easier to have higher rates to hire staff


Why does Minnesota need PRTF’s?

  • Over 300 children sent out of the state every year
  • More intensive level of service than Residential Treatment Centers
  • Less intensive level of service than inpatient


Learn more at the MN Department of Human Services