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Residential Treatment Centers for Troubled Teens


Abbreviated for this type of location is R.T.C. some insurance companies will pay for placement in an R.T.C. Usually if they do however, they must be accredited with the Joint Hospital Accreditation Committee or J.H.A.C.O. To be J.H.A.C.O. approved there are more requirements that need to be met than just being licensed as an R.T.C. facility. Usually an insurance company will pay for around 30 or 60 days in and R.T.C. type facility. This sometimes is more like a vacation for the teen. The other drawback is the fact that it is short term. Short term is typically not adequate to help make lasting changes in a teen’s life.

If you are considering placement in an R.T.C. you should usually plan on following it up with a long term follow up placement. This type of placement is usually necessary if the teen has been abusing a lot of substances and will need a de-tox period. Residential Treatment Centers are typically more a medical type placement rather than a boarding school placement. There are R.T.C.’s however that include education, and behavior modification as part of their milieu. Again when searching for the best program for your teen this will be something you should inquire about.

There are long term Residential Treatment Centers that will in some cases qualify for insurance coverage if the insurance company will work with you. Residential Treatment Centers vary in price as well as typical length of stay. Sometimes a program will have two different price structures. They will have one program price for insured families and one program for non insured families. The program is in essence giving a discount to the family for bearing the total financial burden of their teens care. It is good to find out if and what your insurance plan will cover before you begin the process of searching for a school or Residential Treatment Center.

If you know what you have to work with it may save you some time in your search. For example if you are unable to pay for a program, school. Or Residential Treatment Center and insurance is your only hope of financially being able to place your teen. You will need to find out exactly what they are most likely to be willing to pay for. You can contact your benefits coordinator at work or review your benefits manual. You can also contact the numbers on the back of your insurance card. This will require some patients and you should be prepared to be transferred several times before you find the appropriate person to give you the answer you are looking for. Be sure to write the name down of anyone that has been helpful so you can get back in touch with them directly. If possible have your insurance company send you a letter stating that they will pay for what you are looking for and if possible have them send you some choices in their network.

If you find an out of network program there may still be some help available but usually at a reduced rate or length of stay. Some R.T.C.’s have a benefit person in the admission’s office that may be able to help you, but usually you will have more time, and interest to chase this information down than they will.

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