Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facilities

What is a Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility?

A Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility (PRTF) is an inpatient psychiatric facility for children and youth who need intensive psychiatric care but do not require the level of care of an inpatient hospital setting. For more information, please visit the Residential Programs for Youth section of the Colorado Department of Human Services website.

Who is eligible?

PRTF services are for Health First Colorado (Colorado's Medicaid Program) members under the age of 21 who need inpatient services to treat a psychiatric condition under the direction of a physician. If the client was receiving services just prior to turning 21, the client may receive services before reaching the age of 22.

What services do clients receive in a PRTF?

PRTF services include all physical and behavioral health care as well as 24-hour maintenance care, including room and board. Services also include 24-hour nursing care and awake staff onsite. All care is directed by a physician.

How does a client access PRTF services?

A Health First Colorado-eligible child or youth may be referred for PRTF services by private citizens (including families), social services, youth corrections, community mental health centers (CMHCs) and behavioral health organizations (BHOs). Referred clients will have access to services once an assessment is done and the client is found to require inpatient psychiatric treatment in a PRTF.

How can a PRTF facility become a Health First Colorado provider?

PRTFs must be licensed and monitored by the Colorado Department of Human Services (DHS), Division of Child Care. For more information, please visit the Licensing section on the Colorado Department of Human Services website. Facilities must enroll as Health First Colorado providers to provide PRTF services to Health First Colorado members.

Frequently Asked Questions

Child Welfare Placements in In-State Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facilities (PRTFs) Fact Sheet


Program Contacts

Department of Health Care Policy & Financing:
Christina Winship

Department of Human Services:
Kerry Swenson