Dept of Health & Human Services (DHHS)

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Hospital Treatment Services

DHHS contracts with several hospitals in southeastern Wisconsin to provide for acute psychiatric inpatient and medical detoxification services. About 90% of the inpatient admissions are involuntary, wherein law officers initiate a legal process known as an emergency detention (for mental illness) to safeguard persons who are judged to be a danger to themselves or others, or a protective custody (for alcohol or drug abuse) to safeguard persons who are incapacitated by alcohol . The remaining admissions are voluntary.

Hospital Admission Process
DHHS staff assess all persons for admission to hospital treatment to help determine the most appropriate level of care. In most cases a medical clearance is required at Aurora Lakeland Medical Center before a person is admitted to a psychiatric facility.

Involuntary admissions are transported to area hospitals by ambulance to ensure medical monitoring and the safety of the client.

Voluntary clients may be transported for hospital admission by DHHS staff or by a responsible adult of the client's choice.

Continuity of Care
Upon discharge from hospital treatment, clients are referred to outpatient services for whatever professional therapy and medication-monitoring is indicated. In some cases, specialized intensive outpatient or residential alcohol and drug treatment services are provided after inpatient treatment.

Responsibility for Payment
When DHHS authorizes a client to receive mental health or substance abuse treatment in a hospital or licensed residential treatment facility, the client or another responsible party is liable for all charges related to the cost of that treatment.

When a client provides information about insurance coverage or other payment sources, the hospital or treatment facility will bill those sources for the cost of the treatment.

If a client does not have insurance, or if insurance does not pay for the full cost of the client’s care, the client is liable for paying the treating facility directly.

 If the client cannot pay the treating facility, DHHS will pay the facility on behalf of the client, but client is always responsible for repaying DHHS in full.

Terms of repayment can be negotiated with DHHS based on a client’s ability to pay. The client or a responsible party can also request a long-term, interest-free plan of repayment.


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