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What is a Residential Treatment Facility? 

A behavioral health residential treatment facility can play a vital role in providing specialized care for individuals with behavioral health needs. These facilities offer a safe and structured environment where residents receive round-the-clock support and access to a range of therapeutic services. Read on if you’re interested in learning more about residential treatment facilities, the services they provide, the benefits they offer, billing and documentation, and the challenges associated with residential treatment billing. We will also share best practices for choosing the right behavioral health software for these facilities. 

Understanding a Behavioral Health Residential Facility 

A residential treatment facility is a care settings designed to provide long-term comprehensive mental health treatment and support. These facilities offer various programs tailored to residents' specific needs, including therapy, counseling, life skills training, and educational programs. The goal is to create an environment that promotes healing, personal growth, and long-term recovery. 

A Behavioral health residential facility caters to individuals facing various challenges, such as substance use disorder (also known as substance abuse), mental health disorders, eating disorders, and trauma-related conditions. They employ evidence-based therapeutic approaches like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), motivational interviewing, and trauma-informed care. Treatment plans are customized for each resident, considering their specific needs, strengths, and goals. 

Services and Programs Offered in a Behavioral Health Residential Facility 

A behavioral health residential facility provides a wide range of services to address their residents' unique needs. Individual therapy allows residents to work one-on-one with clinicians to explore their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors in a safe and confidential environment.

Group therapy provides an opportunity for residents to connect with peers who may be facing similar challenges, share experiences, and learn from one another. Family therapy involves the participation of family members to address family dynamics, improve communication, and support the resident's recovery. 

Experiential therapies, such as art therapy, equine therapy, and adventure therapy offer residents alternative forms of expression and opportunities for personal growth.

Educational programs focus on providing residents with knowledge and skills related to their behavioral health challenges, substance use disorder, relapse prevention, and healthy coping mechanisms.

Life skills training equips residents with practical skills needed to navigate daily life, such as budgeting, time management, and problem-solving. 

The Benefits of a Residential Treatment Facility 

  1. Round-the-Clock Support and Supervision: 24/7 support is offered by a multidisciplinary team of behavioral healthcare professionals. This constant availability ensures that residents receive immediate assistance during times of crisis or when facing emotional distress. The presence of trained staff contributes to a safe and supportive environment. 
  2. Safe and Structured Environment: A structured environment is provided, where residents can focus solely on their recovery without external distractions. The daily routine and rules within the residential treatment facility promote stability, accountability, and personal growth. Residents are removed from potentially triggering environments and negative influences, reducing the risk of relapse or regression. 
  3. Peer Support and Community Integration: Living in a residential treatment facility allows residents to connect with peers who are facing similar challenges. This peer support fosters a sense of community, reduces feelings of isolation, and promotes understanding and empathy. Residents can share their experiences, offer encouragement, and learn from one another's recovery journeys. Community integration activities further enhance social skills and the development of a supportive network. 
  4. Focus on Long-Term Recovery: Residents are equipped with essential coping skills, relapse prevention techniques, and strategies for maintaining a healthy lifestyle beyond their stay in the facility. The immersive nature of residential treatment enhances the chances of sustained recovery compared to shorter-term interventions. 


Key Components of Behavioral Health Software for Residential Treatment Facilities 

Managing the administrative tasks, documentation, and billing processes in a behavioral health residential facility can be complex and time-consuming. Utilizing specialized behavioral health software can greatly streamline these processes. Here are some key components to consider: 

  1. Electronic Health Record (EHR) Software: A comprehensive EHR solution designed with behavioral health residential treatment facilities in mind efficiently stores and manages residents' records, treatment plans, progress notes, and more. It should provide a user-friendly interface that allows for easy navigation and quick access to essential information. 
  2. Billing and Revenue Cycle Management: Billing functionality is tailored to the unique requirements of residential treatment facilities. EHR solutions automate residential treatment billing processes, reducing errors, and improving revenue cycle management. 
  3. Treatment Planning and Documentation: Simple tracking for the creation and implementation of individualized treatment plans, allowing care providers to document progress, interventions, and outcomes effectively. It also allows behavioral health residential facilities to streamline the documentation process and ensure compliance with regulatory standards. 
  4. Interoperability and Integration: Seamless and secure data exchange between systems improves collaboration, reduces duplication of efforts, and enhances the overall continuity of care.

Challenges and Considerations in Residential Treatment Billing 

Residential treatment billing can be intricate due to the complexity of services provided and the involvement of multiple payers, such as insurance companies and government programs. Some common challenges faced in residential treatment billing include verifying insurance coverage, obtaining prior authorizations, navigating complex billing codes, and dealing with denied claims. Billing errors can lead to delayed payments and financial strain on the facility. To overcome these challenges, it is crucial to implement efficient billing processes, train staff in billing guidelines, and leverage technology solutions, like Exym’s behavioral health EHR software, that automate and streamline billing tasks. Regular audits and continuous monitoring can help identify and resolve billing issues promptly. 

Best Practices for Choosing a Behavioral Health EHR Software for a Residential Treatment Facility 

When selecting a behavioral health EHR software solution for a residential treatment facility, consider the following best practices: 

  1. Evaluate Specific Needs: Identify the unique requirements of your facility, such as the number of beds, types of services provided, and billing intricacies, to ensure the software aligns with your operational workflows. 
  2. Compatibility and Integration: Assess the compatibility of the behavioral health EHR software with existing systems and ensure smooth integration to minimize disruption and maximize efficiency. Consider whether the software supports HL7 standards for data exchange. 
  3. Security and Privacy Measures: Verify that the software complies with industry standards for data security and privacy, such as HIPAA regulations, to protect sensitive resident information. When meeting with EHR software providers, ask how they help keep your residential treatment facility compliant and secure. 
  4. Scalability and Future Growth: Choose a software solution that can scale with your facility's needs and accommodate future growth, allowing you to accommodate a growing resident population.  
  5. Training and Support: Ensure that your behavioral health EHR software vendor provides comprehensive training and ongoing technical support to assist with implementation, staff training, and troubleshooting. Adequate support is crucial for a successful transition to the new software and the ongoing operation of the facility. Exym has an all-star Implementation team that guides our customers through the entire process of implementation. Once fully onboarded, Exym customers are then assigned a Customer Success Manager, who is always there for their questions and needs. 

Behavioral health residential facilities provide a comprehensive and supportive environment for individuals with mental health needs. To streamline administrative tasks, documentation, and residential treatment billing processes, it is essential to utilize a behavioral health EHR software tailored to the unique needs of residential treatment facilities. By implementing best practices and selecting the right software solution, residential treatment facilities can enhance operational efficiency, improve client care, and ensure sustainable growth.  

Why Choose Exym for Your Behavioral Health Residential Facility? 

Exym’s behavioral health EHR software helps residential treatment facilities manage the details of their clients and integrate them with their programs and client records. Exym can provide:

Easy Residence Management: Add a residence with room count details to easily assign clients to available beds. 

Track Stays Over Time: Use Exym to document the details of a client’s current and past stays in your residential programs. 

Track Activities: Create, track, and document activities that apply to an entire home.


“We chose Exym because of its reputation for stability in performance. Residential care is a high stress environment, and we did not want to add to that stress with an electronic health record that was frequently down or unreliable. We have been pleased with the dependability of Exym. This has allowed us to put the focus on the youth we serve.”

- David Palmer, Boys Republic

Visit our Residential Providers page or schedule a 15-minute discovery call with Exym EHR software to learn  more about how our solutions can benefit your behavioral health residential facility.  

Exym is a comprehensive EHR software solution designed specifically for behavioral health agencies. Trusted for 20+ years, our intuitive and customizable software empowers providers to improve client outcomes, manage revenue cycles, and increase agency efficiency. Exym allows you to spend more time on what matters most- the clients in your care.



Lisa Potter
Post by Lisa Potter
July 17, 2023