Lynne A. Valenti
Cabinet Secretary

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Access to Psychiatric Treatment Services for Adolescents

The Human Services Center Adolescent Psychiatric Program provides inpatient psychiatric treatment to adolescents (ages 12 through 17) with mental illness or severe emotional disturbance.  All HSC adolescent psychiatric units are Medicaid certified.  The goal of the adolescent program is to develop and initiate individualized treatment and discharge plans, provide effective treatment, and to support the patient in transition to home or another appropriate placement setting. Length of hospitalization is based on the needs of the individual patient.

Adolescents can be admitted by:

  • Involuntary mental illness commitment
  • Involuntary tribal court commitment (patients are committed by the Tribal Court to Indian Health Services to be placed in an appropriate facility)
  • Voluntary by guardian (this can be a parent or a court appointed legal guardian such as the Department of Social Services or Bureau of Indian Affairs Social Services)
  • Inter-departmental transfer from the Department of Corrections
  • Juvenile court order
  • Inter-institutional transfer from the South Dakota Developmental Center in Redfield.

Pre-admission arrangements are made by calling 605.668.3100 and asking for the Adolescent Admissions Social Worker. It will be necessary to have information available regarding the adolescent’s presenting problem, psychiatric and medical history, as well as guardianship documentation.  Prior to admission, all adolescents must be evaluated by a Qualified Mental Health Professional (QMHP) and diagnosed with a severe emotional disturbance.  It must be determined that the adolescent would likely benefit from inpatient psychiatric treatment, and has mental health needs which cannot be met in a less restrictive environment.  If the adolescent has medical concerns, medical clearance by a physician is necessary for admission.

For involuntary and juvenile court order commitments, the petition, order of detainment, QMHP and medical clearance (if applicable) are required.  For Voluntary by Guardian commitments, a child that has been adopted or is in the legal guardianship of a person other than their parent, the court order is required.