Milwaukee County DHHS Behavioral Health

The Behavioral Health Division provides care and treatment to emotionally and mentally ill adults, children and adolescents through both county-operated programs and contracts with community agencies.

The Milwaukee County DHHS Behavioral Health Division connects people of Milwaukee County with dependable, high-quality behavioral health services, no matter their severity of need or ability to pay. Services include intensive short-term treatment, inpatient services and a full array of supportive community mobile, outpatient and residential services.

The Psychiatric Crisis Service/Observation Clinic

Behavioral Health Division logoThe Center provides 24/7 psychiatric crisis services including assessment, crisis intervention and medications and has the capacity for client observation for up to 48 hours as needed.

The Psychiatric Crisis Line: (414) 257-7222

The Crisis Line is often the first point of contact with the mental health system for individuals in crisis and is the main access point for the mobile team services. The mobile team is able to send a team of clinicians to a site to provide assessments, interventions or referrals. The Crisis Line is available 24/7 to provide immediate psychiatric crisis intervention services. Services available include screening and assessment, crisis counseling and intervention, emergency service coordination and free referral information.

The Access Clinic

The clinic serves uninsured Milwaukee County residents requesting psychiatric assessment, medications or community referrals.

Inpatient Services: Acute Adult/Child Services

The Milwaukee County DHHS Behavioral Health Division's Hospital Inpatient Services are provided in four licensed psychiatric hospital units with three specialized programs for adults and one specialized unit for children and adolescents. Adult units include one 24-bed adult unit called the Academic Treatment Unit (ATU), one 24-bed Women's Treatment Unit (WTU) and one 18-bed Intensive Treatment Unit (ITU). All units provide inpatient care to individuals who require safe, secure, short-term or occasionally extended hospitalization.

A multi-disciplinary team approach of psychiatry, psychology, nursing, social service and rehabilitation therapy professionals provide assessment and treatment designed to stabilize an acute psychiatric need and assist the return of the patient to his or her own community.

  • The WTU program provides specialized services for women recovering from complex and co-occurring severe mental health disorders.
  • The ITU program provides a safe, supportive environment for individuals with mental health conditions who are at high risk for aggressive behavior and in need of intensive behavioral and pharmacological interventions.
  • The Child and Adolescent (CAIS) unit provides inpatient care to individuals age 18 and under. The CAIS unit also provides emergency detention services for Milwaukee County as well as inpatient screening for Children’s Court.

Children’s Branch/Wraparound Milwaukee, Behavioral Health Division

Wraparound Milwaukee is a unique program of care and public-managed care that serves children and adolescents with serious emotional, behavioral or mental health issues who are at risk of residential treatment, correctional care or psychiatric hospitalization.

Children served are typically involved in multiple child-serving systems including child welfare, youth justice, mental health and special education. Wraparound serves court-ordered youth through the regular Wraparound program, non-court involved, voluntary referrals through the REACH program; transitional youth aged 18–23 through Project O’YEAH; and youth at risk of incarceration through the FOCUS program. In addition, Wraparound Milwaukee’s Children's Mobile Crisis team (CMCT) provides 24/7 crisis intervention services and families with children with behavioral issues, runaway or other parent-child conflicts are also seen through the Family Intervention Support Services (FISS) program.

Funding for Wraparound is pooled among child welfare, juvenile justice and Medicaid with most families being Badger Care Plus eligible. Services provided are comprehensive and individualized, including care coordination, therapy services, support services such as mentors, crisis 1:1 and other emergency services, medication management and some out-of-home services as appropriate.

Community Access to Recovery Services (CARS)

The program is composed of community-based services for persons with a serious mental illness, a substance use disorder or both. CARS is composed of several major programs for the medical and nonmedical care of individuals in the community. These include Community Support Programs, Community Based Residential Facilities, Targeted Case Management, Outpatient Treatment and Prevention and Intervention Services. CARS maintains a voucher network for the delivery of services for individuals with substance use disorders called WIser Choice. WIser Choice provides access to a range of services, including clinical treatment, recovery support coordination and recovery support services. Services are designed to reduce an individual’s time institutionalized by promoting consumer choice, independence and recovery.