UM Guidelines
Respite Care, Adult: Residential Care

Behavioral Health (BH)

BCBST last reviewed June 25, 2020*

Clinical Indications for Admission to Residential Care


  1. Edgar, M, Uhl, M. National Respite Guidelines: Guiding principles for respite models and services. ARCH National Resource Center 2011; retrieved from
  2. Elmore, D. Respite for caregivers of adults with mental disorders. The Technical Assistance Center for Lifespan Respite September 2011; fact sheet number 57: 1-19, ARCH National Respite Network and Resource Center. Retrieved from
  3. Jeon, YH, Brodaty, H, Chesterson, J. Respite care for caregivers and people with severe mental illness: literature review. Journal of Advanced Nursing 2005; 49(3):297-306.


[A] Program Definition: This level of care is a short-term crisis stabilization response that provides stabilization and safety in a licensed facility or licensed home for a maximum of three calendar days. Respite Care provides breaks for caregivers and gives an option to de-escalate a situation while avoiding hospitalization. It is designed to relieve stress and provide a safe environment for the member while assessing the member’s treatment needs. It can be provided in a variety of settings depending on facility. The purpose is to stabilize the member within the three-day period and prepare him/her for reintegration back into the living environment from which he/she came. If the member is unable to return home within three days, the member will be referred to a clinically-determined level of care. This intervention provides a safe, controlled environment with a high degree of supervision and structure in which the member receives therapeutic assessment and intervention.

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