Common Terms Used In Behavioral Health Settings


ABHI – Arrowhead Behavioral Health Initiative (formerly Region 3 Adult Mental Health Inititiave)

AC – Alternative Care. This program provides community-based care to elderly individuals who would be eligible for Medical Assistance within 180 days of nursing home placement and who are at risk of nursing home placement.

ACCESS – Access to Child Care for Educational Support and Success.

AccessAbility – Special Needs Basic Care program provided by Medica. Provides health care coordination for individuals between the ages of 18 – 64 who are MA eligible and deemed disabled by social security.

Accessible Services – Services that are affordable, located nearby, and provide some evening and weekend hours. Staff is sensitive to and incorporates individual and cultural values.

ACT – Assertive Community Treatment Team. Intensive, 24/7 services for people with serious mental illness provided mostly in community settings by multidisciplinary treatment teams.

(Legacy) Adoption Assistance – A benefit set assigned to the adoptive parents of a child who is adopted following a CHIPS court proceeding.

Adult Day Care – A program that provides supervision, care, assistance, training, and activities for recipients in either a family adult foster home or adult day care center. This program can be funded through elderly or DD services.

Adult Foster Home – A foster home situation for adults who, because of special needs or vulnerabilities, are not able to be totally independent.

AFCARS – Adoption and Foster Care Analysis & Reporting System. The federal program to collect data on children in out-of-home placement.

Affirmative Action – The established federal and state policy of not only providing equal opportunity employment, but providing additional effort for certain groups including minorities, older workers, and women. Affirmative action requires that agencies make certain administrative efforts to improve employment opportunities and to guarantee that discrimination will not occur.

AHA – Arrowhead Health Alliance

AHIC – Minnesota’s At-Home Infant Care Program. Provides financial help to families with a child less than one year of age to cover some of the costs of a parent staying home to care for their infant.

AMC – Association of Minnesota Counties. An association lobbying in the state legislature on behalf of county commissioners. Advises them on personnel, legislation, and other management topics.

AMHI – Adult Mental Health Initiatives (AMHI) are regional collaborations charged with overseeing adult mental health services and funding to counties and tribal governments in their area. In Northeast Minnesota or Region the AMHI operates under the name Arrowhead Behavioral Health Initiaitve (see ABHI)

AMSSA – Association of Minnesota Social Service Accountants.

Arc – An organization that is a support group for people with developmental disabilities and their families and friends. This organization also provides public education regarding developmental disabilities and advocates the legal rights of citizens with developmental disabilities.

ARMHS – Adult Rehabilitative Mental Health Services. ARMHS is mental health services that are rehabilitative and enable the recipient to develop and enhance psychiatric stability, social competencies, personal and emotional adjustment, and independent living and community skills, when these abilities are impaired by the symptoms of mental illness. ARMHS services are also appropriate when provided to enable a recipient to retain stability and functioning, if the recipient would be at risk of significant functional decompensation or more restrictive service settings without these services. ARMHS services may only be provided by an entity (a county or provider) that has been certified using the provider certification process developed by the Department of Human Services in consultation with counties and others.

Authorized Representative – Client authorizes another person to represent client with applications, etc. Can use food support on a client’s behalf.


BI Waiver – Brain Injury Waiver. The home- and community-based services waiver that provides community alternatives for survivors of brain injury who are experiencing significant behavioral, emotional, or cognitive problems related to the injury.

BRASS – Budgeting, Reporting, and Accounting for Human Services. Coding system that places all purchased and staff-provided social services into one of six program areas: Children’s Services, Child Care, Chemical Dependency, Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, or Adult Services. This information is used for planning, budgeting, accounting, and reporting of social services activity.

BSF – Basic Sliding Fee child care program. This program provides financial assistance to low income clients who are in need of child care services.

Bulletins – Bulletins are received by county agencies from the Department of Human Services. Some bulletins have the effect of policy and are issued when immediate changes are needed. They must be converted into DHS rule within a certain time period. Others do not give directions, but inform us of various developments and Department changes. Others constitute the official requests of the state office for information, reports and other matters where the Department definitely wants a response.


CABHS – Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Hospital. A DHS operated inpatient mental health hospital for youth and children.

CAC – Community Alternative Care program. These are community-based, home-care services provided under a Medicaid waiver to eligible physically disabled individuals under the age of 65 who are eligible for MA and are at risk of inpatient hospital care.

CADI – Community Alternatives for Disabled Individuals. These are community-based home care services provided under a Medicaid waiver to eligible physically disabled individuals under the age of 65 who are eligible for Medical Assistance and who would need the level of care provided in a nursing home if home- and community-based services were not available.

CAF – Combined Application Form. Application for public assistance programs, cash, medical, and food support. Case Management/Care Coordination – The arrangement, coordination, and monitoring of services to meet the needs of clients and their families. Case management activities include, but are not limited to: individual service plan development and monitoring; developing, securing, and coordinating services; monitoring and evaluating client progress; and ensuring that clients’ rights are protected.

Categorical Programs – Used to identify those financial assistance programs receiving federal reimbursement. This includes Medical Assistance.

CBHH – Community Behavioral Health Hospital (16-bed inpatient acute psychiatric hospital) operated by State Operated Services.

CCAP – Child Care Assistance Program (see BSF).

CCDTF – Stands for Consolidated Chemical Dependency Treatment Fund. A law that allocates a variety of public funds to the individual counties for disbursement. The County CD Coordinator has the responsibility to authorize the funds to be spent for treatment at the facility most appropriate and helpful to the client. Client’s income level and family size determine eligibility.

CCY – Community Concern for Youth. This is an adolescent diversion program operating under Todd-Wadena Community Corrections.

CD – Can have three meanings. First, it can stand for chemical dependency; it can also mean a certificate of deposit; and it can also be used as an abbreviation for contract for deed. It is used in all three ways by the staff of the Department; the meaning can only be derived by the context.

CEP – Can have two meanings. (1) An abbreviation for Rural Minnesota Concentrated Employment Program, which administers supported employment programs. This is a private, nonprofit corporation covering 19 counties. (2) Common Entry Point. Reporting center for reports of Vulnerable Adult Maltreatment. MAARC Minnesota Adult Abuse Reporting Center is the current designated CEP.

CHCO (TEFRA) – The Children’s Home Care Option provides Medical Assistance (MA) eligibility to disabled children who live at home with their family. Only the child’s income and assets are counted when determining MA eligibility. The income and assets of the child’s parents are not counted. Eligibility requirements are: 1) the child is under 18 years of age and has been certified as disabled by the Social Security Administration or the State Medical Review Team; 2) the care that the child needs would be provided in a hospital, nursing home, or an ICF/MR but the child is able to receive the care at home; 3) the cost of the home care to MA does not exceed the cost of care in an institution.

Child Foster Home – The term for a licensed home used for a child in need of a placement outside of their parental home.

Child Protection Team – The organization made up of representatives from community agencies and other professionals who are concerned with the protection of children. Included on the Child Protection Team are representatives from Human Services, Law Enforcement, the County Attorney’s office, Community Corrections, the schools, Public Health Agencies, and the medical and mental health communities.

Child Welfare (CW) – Can apply to the type of case, meaning a voluntary social service
case where services are being provided to a family with minor children. It can also
identify the type of payment mechanism used.

Child Welfare – Targeted Case Management – This is a funding mechanism that enables the county to obtain reimbursement from Medical Assistance for appropriate and documented case management contact with children at risk. Funds generated must be used by counties to enhance defined services.

Children’s Mental Health (CMH) – Comprehensive case management services to assist eligible children and their families in addressing a child’s mental health and navigating the mental health service system. Parents and children will develop a plan based on their family’s unique strengths to best address their children’s mental health needs.

CHIPS – Child in need of Protection and/or Services. A petition initiated by Human Services or Community Corrections to bring child protection and some child welfare matters to court.

CMS – Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services. This is the federal agency responsible for administering Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance), HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), and several other health-related programs.

Community Addiction Resource Enterprise –State Operated Services – CD program that provides services to people who are chemically dependent (adults, children, Native Americans), have brain injury (BI), and child and adolescent behavioral health.

Conservatorship – When someone (called a protected person) is determined by a court to be unable to manage their own financial affairs, a conservator may be appointed. The conservator is granted powers necessary to manage the finances, property, and real estate of the protected person.

CP – Child protection. This is the program at county agencies that assesses reports of neglect, physical and sexual abuse, and provides ongoing case management when needed.

CP – Custodial parent (child support term).

CSES – Child Support Enforcement System. A statewide computer system used to process information regarding payers and payees, as well as child support-related obligations. It is accessed through PRISM.

CSG – Consumer Support Grant – This is a state-funded alternative to some MA home care services.

CSIS – Community Services Information System. A computer-based system used for payment and reporting of sliding fee and MFIP child care services. It is also used to submit social service claims to Medical Assistance. A history of other social service payments and claims is also retained in this system.

CSP – Community Support Program. A mental health program for people with emotional problems or mental illness. As defined in a Minnesota mental health statute, there are ten basic services required to be provided by every county: 1) outreach, 2) assistance with basic human needs, 3) outpatient mental health care, 4) 24-hour crisis assistance, 5) psychosocial and vocational services, 6) a range of housing and living arrangements, 7) assistance to the public in education about mental illness, 8) help clients to use natural support systems, 9) grievance procedures to protect client rights, and 10) case management.

Custody – Physical custody signifies the party has legal control and responsibility for the everyday care of a minor.

CW-TCM – See Child Welfare – Targeted Case Management.


DA – Diagnostic Assessment. A diagnostic assessment is a written summary of an evaluation conducted by a mental health professional in a face to face interview with the client (family) to determine whether the person has a mental disorder.

Data Privacy – The general term applying to several state laws that restrict the conditions under which we can collect personal information, how we store it, when it must be destroyed, to whom it can be disseminated, and client’s access to this information.

Day Care Home – A home licensed by the county to provide child care.

DD – Developmental Disabilities. The term developmentally disabled includes people with retardation or related conditions (e.g., autism, cerebral palsy, and epilepsy).

DD/RC Waiver – Title XIX Home- and Community-Based Waivered Services for Persons with Mental Retardation or Related Conditions. A waiver granted by Medical Assistance allowing payment for services not specifically medical to clients who have mental retardation or related conditions. The purpose of this service is to help the client live in a community setting versus an institutional setting.

DDU – Disability Determination Unit. A unit in the state Division of Rehabilitation Services, which under contract determines the disability for both SSI (Supplemental Security Income) and Social Security. The Department of Human Services uses the SMRT, or State Medical Review Team, but will accept the results of the DDU if that has been done previously.

Detox – Applies to receiving centers required by law to be established in every mental health area in the state in order to detoxify individuals found to be publicly intoxicated or high.

DHS – Department of Human Services. DHS provides supervision and technical assistance to county social service agencies.

DOC – Difficulty-Of-Care. This refers to a supplemental maintenance payment for children or adults in substitute care. The amount is determined by the local social service agency and is based upon an assessment of the person’s special needs due to existing physical, mental, or emotional conditions. Also, term used in child support that means Department of Corrections.

DRS – Division of Rehabilitation Services, used to be called the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR). It administers funds provided for rehabilitation of individuals needing vocational training.

DT&H – Day Training and Habilitation. The DT&H provides services to help people with developmental disabilities develop to their fullest potential. Programming includes community integration activities, self-care, and vocational training. It is provided locally at the Wadena County DAC, Inc.

DVA – Department of Veterans Affairs, a state office for veterans’ benefits; as distinguished from VA or the Veterans Administration, which administers federal veterans’ programs.

DUI – Driving Under the Influence (of alcohol and/or drugs). Often used interchangeably with DWI.

DWI – Means Driving While under the Influence (of alcohol and/or drugs) and results in state-mandated chemical use assessments and recommendations. If appropriate, the person is referred to a treatment or counseling program.

DWP – Diversionary Work Program. The Diversionary Work Program is a four-month program that helps low-income Minnesota families find a job. When families first apply for cash assistance, most will participate in DWP.


EA – Emergency Assistance. Emergency program for families facing an emergent crisis

EBT – Electronic Benefits Transfer. Public assistance clients use a card similar to a credit card to access their cash assistance and/or food support.

EGA (Emergency General Assistance) – This is an emergency program for adult(s) without children facing an emergent crisis.

“Eligibility” – Eligibility in the public assistance sense means that the applicant is at or below the program limits established by the state or federal government. Eligibility does not necessarily mean need, nor does it mean deserving. In recommending cases to the Board, the staff determines eligibility in the technical sense and does not necessarily use the other two factors in reviewing an application.

EVS – Eligibility Verification System. Used by medical service providers to verify an individual’s eligibility for one of the Minnesota Health Care Programs on a specific date of service. A provider uses a touch tone phone and modem to access the information and must enter their provider number, the individual’s PMI #, and the dates of service.

EW – Elderly Waiver. This waiver provides community-based care to elderly individuals
who are on Medical Assistance and who are at risk of nursing facility placement.


FAR – Family Assessment Response; a child protection assessment which evaluates safety and future risk of abuse and neglect, and which develops interventions from a family-centered, strength-based perspective.

Family Community Support Services (FCSS) – Community-based services under the clinical supervision of a mental health professional which may include medication monitoring, leisure and recreational activities, developing independent living skills, locating respite care, etc.

FBS – Family-Based Services. Services that are provided to a family in their own home with a goal of preserving the family unit and preventing out-of-home placements.

Food Shelf – A service provided by the local communities that makes food available for people who need food in emergency situations.

FS – Food Support (formerly food stamps). This program is administered by FNS (Food and Nutrition Service) of the USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture). See also SNAP.

FSG – Family Support Grant – This is a statewide program to prevent the out-of-home placement of children with disabilities and to promote family health and social well-being by assisting families with access to disability services and supports.


GA – General Assistance. Provides financial aid to those who are not eligible for other federal and state financial assistance programs and who lack money for food, shelter, and other basic necessities.

GRH – Group Residential Housing. This is a state-funded income supplement program that pays for room-and-board costs for low-income adults who have been placed in a licensed or registered setting with which a county human service agency has negotiated a monthly rate.

Guardianship – Guardianship can, when necessary, be the broadest substitute decision-making for a person (called a ward) unable to make or communicate their own decisions. The court grants to a guardian only those powers necessary to provide for the personal affairs of the ward. These areas may include medical care, nutrition, clothing, shelter, residence, and safety.


HCBS – Home- and Community-Based Services. DD and LTC waivered services.

HCSP – Health Care Savings Plan. First implemented in 2002, this allows participating employees to set aside money each pay period and severance pay at separation to pay medical expenses after leaving public service. The Minnesota State Retirement System is the plan administrator.

HDC – Human Development Center

HHS – Department of Health and Human Services. This unit of the federal government determines policy and procedures for health and human services administration.

HMO – This refers to Health Maintenance Organizations. They provide managed care for MA/GAMC recipients in PMAP counties.

Hold Order – This is a term used when it is necessary for a police officer or doctor to put an emergency hold on an adult or child in order to protect that person from either themselves or someone else. A hold order gives officials the right to place a person in a facility where they will be protected. Hold orders are effective for 72 hours excluding weekends and holidays.

Hospice – A service that provides non-life extending services to an individual who has been certified by their physician to have a terminal illness not expected to last more than six months. All social security benefits are signed over to the hospice program, and hospice provides all the needed medications and/or supplies for the comfort of the patient. Home care and nursing services are also provided.

HRA – Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

HRA – Health Risk Assessment.

HRF – Household Report Form.

HUD – Housing and Urban Development. Provides funds for construction of low income
and senior citizen housing projects and rent subsidies.


ICF – Intermediate Care Facilities. A certification level established by the federal government. The federal government indicates medical assistance funds can be used for facilities that they define as either ICF or SNF, which means Skilled Nursing Facilities. Under the ICF designation, there are at least three classifications. The first is ICF-1, which is intermediate nursing care. ICF-2 is similar to the boarding care facilities, but very few are still in operation because of funding problems. The third designation is the ICF/MR. This is a special classification established by the federal government just for Minnesota to provide group home living experiences for people who have mental retardation or related conditions (now called developmental disabilities). This class was set up so medical assistance funds could be used. This is not the same as licensure by the Department of Health.

ICWA – Indian Child Welfare Act.

IEVS – Income and Eligibility Verification System. A federal system of verification of income and eligibility for federal public assistance programs. This is achieved by matching client eligibility information on computer with other data files to detect unreported income and assets.

IFS – Integrated Financial System. Computerized accounting system used by government agencies combining several subsidiary funds into one general ledger.

IIIP – Interagency Individual Intervention Plan. This is a standardized, written plan describing those programs or services and the accompanying funding sources available to eligible children with disabilities.

IIT – Intensive In-Home Treatment. This is a professional counseling service provided to families in their home on an intensive basis (generally for two to six hours per week) with the goals of either preventing out-of-home placement for children or reunifying a family.

IPP – Individual Program Plan. Plan describing specific objectives and methods designed to meet the goals of the person’s Individual Service Plan (ISP). Service providers develop their own proposed IPP, which is reviewed and modified by the interdisciplinary team (IDT). The IDT consists of the person with developmental disabilities, case manager, legal representative, advocate, and a representative of each service provider.

IPP – Interim Policy and Procedure for child support – policy issued by the state.

IRT – Intensive Residential Treatment – Treatment programs for mentally ill persons that specialize in certain treatment modes for particular diagnoses. These are MA/GRH-funded programs.

ITV – Interactive TV (teleconferencing)

IV-D – Federal program that sets the rules for collecting child support.

IV-E – See Title IV-E.




LEAA – Means Law Enforcement Administration Act. This is the source of funds for a specific local project in the law enforcement area that has funded community corrections programs. They also fund Regional Planning Councils in the area of corrections.

Legal Aid – Legal assistance for low-income households.

LEP Plan – Limited English Proficiency Plan. The agency plan for providing interpreters to clients who ask for one because of their limited English language skills.

LTC – The DHS and Department of Health term for long-term care, which includes all of the ICF facilities and the SNFs (group homes and nursing homes).


MA – Medical Assistance (or Medicaid) assists persons who cannot meet the costs of necessary medical care. If eligible for the program, part or all of the medical bills can be paid. Medical Assistance pays for most necessary medical care, such as physician services, most prescriptions, dental care, hospital and nursing home care, medical tests, physical therapy, eye glasses, hearing aids, and medical equipment.

MACSSA – Minnesota Association of Community Social Service Administrators. This association is for human services directors of the different county social service agencies.

MA-EPD – Medical Assistance for Employed Persons with Disabilities.

Magistrate – Judiciary official who presides over child support court proceedings.

MAPCY – Minnesota Assessment of Parenting Children and Youth. A standardized assessment to determine the needs and parenting requirements of children and youth in placement, adoptive homes, or kinship homes.

MAXIS – Statewide computer system for financial assistance programs.

MCRA – Minnesota County Recovery Association. This is the statewide organization of county collections staff who are enforcing the collection of debts due to the county and State of Minnesota.

MDE – Minnesota Department of Education – works to help communities to measurably improve the well-being of children through programs that focus on education, community services, prevention, and the preparation of young people for the world of work.

MDES – Minnesota Department of Economic Security.

MDH – Minnesota Department of Health.

MEC² – Minnesota Electronic Child Care. Billing and payment system for the state child care assistance program.

Medicare – Medical coverage through Social Security.

Medicaid – The Federal Medicaid program is called Medical Assistance in Minnesota.

MFIP – Minnesota Family Investment Program. A program designed to simplify the structure and administration of the public assistance system in Minnesota. The focus is on using existing resources more effectively and efficiently and includes consolidating federal TANF, health care, and food support. The goal is to promote recipients’ transition to self-sufficiency.

MH – Mental health.

MHFA – The Minnesota Housing Finance Agency offers products and services to help Minnesotans buy and fix up homes. They support the development and preservation of affordable rental housing by offering financing and on-going asset management of affordable rental housing developments. This is a state agency, as distinguished from the federal organization, HUD.

MI – Refers to persons either in a community or in the state hospital who have been diagnosed as having a mental illness.

MinnesotaCare – This is a Minnesota program that makes health care more affordable. The monthly premium is based on income and family size; applicant cannot be eligible for Medical Assistance.

Minnesota Family Preservation Act – The legal basis for providing services for a child who is either at risk of being placed outside of the home or actually has been placed outside of the parental home. Permanency planning goals include diversion from out-of-home placement, reunification with the family once out-of-home placement is necessary, or a permanent plan for the child if reunification is not possible, such as adoption or a permanent transfer of custody.

Minnesota Family Support and Recovery Council (MFSRC) – This organization represents county attorneys, judges, fraud investigators, and resources examiners in the state. The purpose is to promote a better system for child support collections and fraud prosecution and investigations.

MMIS II – Medicaid Management Information System II. A system used in claiming reimbursement for Minnesota Health Care Programs. It includes third-party liability insurance, an eligibility verification program, and screening documents and service agreements for waivered services.

MnCHOICES – MnCHOICES is a single, comprehensive assessment and support planning web-based application for long-term services and supports in Minnesota. MnCHOICES uses a person-centered planning approach to make decisions about long-term services and supports. It includes standards and protocols and serves as a common data collection tool.

MNCIS – Minnesota Court Information System. This is a web-based system of all Minnesota county court administrators’ court files.

MP – Minor Parent program. A plan is developed under the direction of Human Services that provides for the needs of the minor parents and child.

MSA – Minnesota Supplemental Aid provides a monthly payment to aged, blind, or disabled persons whose federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or other income is below state standards for food, shelter, and other basic necessities.

MSC+ – (Minnesota SeniorCare Plus) is a program offered to residents of the South Country Health Alliance service area who are 65 years of age or older and are eligible for Medical Assistance. The MSC+ plan includes all regular Medical Assistance benefits, as well as Elderly Waiver Services.

MSHO – The Minnesota Senior Health Options (MSHO) is a managed health care program that combines Medicare and Medicaid financing and services for seniors age 65 and over who are eligible for Medical Assistance (MA), with or without Medicare. MSHO offers all medically necessary MA state plan services, all Medicare services, home- and community-based services, and any alternative services the health plan may choose to offer. The health plan also pays for the first 180 days of nursing facility care for enrollees who enter a nursing facility after enrollment.

MSHS – Minnesota Specialty Health Systems; also IRTS.

MSSA – Minnesota Social Service Association. MSSA is organized to provide education and information and to promote communication and cooperation among individuals, public and private agencies, and organizations, so that human services can be effectively and efficiently delivered to Minnesotans.


NAMI – National Association on Mental Illness

NCANDS – National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System. The federal system to which all states must report child maltreatment data.

NCP – Non-custodial parent (child support term).

NMLS – Northwest Minnesota Legal Services. A private, non-profit corporation providing civil legal services to low-income people. Private attorneys in the local community who participate in this program provide services to eligible clients.

Northstar Adoption Assistance – The Northstar benefit set assigned to adoptive parents who have received a child through an adoption initiated in CHIPS court.

Northstar Care for Children – The Northstar Care for Children Act is a state law which took effect Jan. 1, 2015. It made significant changes in programs creating a uniform set of benefits and processes for children age 6 and older in foster care, former foster children whose legal custody has been transferred to a relative, and former foster children who have been adopted. Although not uniform, children age 5 and younger also fall within the unified benefits and processes. Northstar Care for Children assists the families caring for children and support permanency for foster children. The previous programs continue for current children and will be phased out over time.

Northstar Kinship Assistance – The Northstar benefit set assigned to relative custodians who have received custody of a child through a permanent transfer of legal and physical custody in CHIPS court.


OCS – The Office of Child Support, a subdivision of the Department of Human Services’ IV-D unit. They supervise our child support collection activities.

OFP – Order For Protection.

Outreach – Applies to a number of federal requirements relating to the food support and Child and Teen Checkups programs. The requirement is that counties not only make the service or program available, but actually attempt to recruit participants.


PA – Prior Authorization OR Public Assistance.

Paternity Action – This refers to the type of court case when paternity is set by the court along with the court order. The court order may specify either monthly child support payments or a lump sum settlement, which must be accepted by both the County Human Services Board and DHS.

PCA – Personal Care Attendant program. Personal care attendant services are home- care services provided in the recipient’s home and can be reimbursed by Medical Assistance for qualified recipients if medically necessary, ordered by a physician, and provided by a personal care attendant under the supervision of a registered nurse.

PDP – Prescription Drug Program.

PERA – The Public Employees Retirement Association is an employee- and employer-funded retirement association operated by the State of Minnesota.

Petition – The legal document drawn up by an attorney to bring an action before the court.

Plan For Child Protective Services – A plan for child protective services is a voluntary or a court-ordered plan that identifies the following: 1) the family; 2) family strengths; 3) family needs; 4) reasons for protective services; 5) services to resolve the problems, who provides services, how much, how often, and how long services are needed; 6) goals to reduce risk to children; 7) specific behaviors and tasks (what must be done by when); 8) signatures. The plan specifies how the agency will work with parents and children to eliminate or reduce the risk for children and eliminate or minimize the need for protective services. The plan is reviewed quarterly. The plan is generated by a child protection assessment indicating protective services are needed.

PLS – This stands for Parent Locator Service, a service offered both by the state government and the federal government. The state government checks records such as the Department of Public Safety, Department of Revenue for tax information, etc. The federal government checks records through various federal agencies such as Social Security Administration, IRS, etc. The service is valuable when someone cannot be located, but takes a long time to get a response. Because of the delay, it has been only infrequently used by our child support officers.

PMAP – Prepaid Medical Assistance Program. Managed health care for MA recipients in non-CBP counties. Services are provided by HMOs.

PMI # – Person Master Index Number. A lifetime number assigned to individuals whose medical expenses are paid by one of the Minnesota Health Care Programs. It does not change regardless of program or eligibility status.

POS – Purchase Of Service. Purchased services are those we buy from other organizations or vendors, such as DT&H, child care, intensive in-home treatment, etc. Prior Authorization – Authorization from Medical Assistance or an insurance company prior to a client being admitted to a hospital or treatment facility to guarantee that they agree the treatment is appropriate and that the medical costs incurred by that client will be paid.

PRISM – Providing Resources to Improve Support in Minnesota. The state’s child support computer system.

Protective Payee – This is less restrictive than a court-ordered conservatorship, where through various administrative channels an individual is named to handle either benefit or financial assistance program payments. The Department serves as protective payee in some Social Security and Supplemental Security Income cases, and less frequently with Veterans Administration payments. This service is provided free of charge.

PRTF – Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility. An inpatient mental health hospital for children and youth focusing on sub-acute care for mental health. An estimated stay is 30-90 days. DHS believes PRTFs will be operating in Minnesota by 7/2017.

PSI – Pre-Sentence Investigation; can be used in the context of a probation officer’s report to Juvenile Court, or in connection with the report requested by the court from our staff following a DWI conviction. These reports generally will indicate the condition of the individual, whether treatment is needed, and any other recommendations the court may find helpful.

PSOP – Parent Support Outreach Program. A program to provide assistance to screened out child protection cases or referrals of families in need. Criteria includes one child under 10 and risk factors for maltreatment.


QC – Quality Control; a section of DHS. Quality control workers review a sampling of cases we have handled. The cases presently subject to quality control include MFIP, MA, and food stamps. If quality control finds an error, the county may be billed for the state and local share of the overpayment, or for the entire amount of the state and local money issued if the case is found to be totally ineligible. QC reviewers use information at the time they make the review, not necessarily the information that was available to us when the initial application or eligibility review was done. QC decisions can be appealed in certain limited circumstances.

QI – Qualified individual. A person eligible for payment of all or part of the Medicare Part B payment by the MA program. The person does not have to be eligible for MA.

QMB – Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries. The Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Act of 1989 provided significant expansion of Medicare to help protect elderly and disabled persons against overwhelming health care costs. As part of this expansion, states are required to include certain benefits under the MA program for persons who are in an eligibility group called Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries (QMBs). These persons qualify for QMB status with a higher income and asset standard than regular MA. Under this plan, MA must pay Medicare cost-sharing expenses for QMBs including Part A premiums (for those who do not have premium-free coverage), Part B premiums, coinsurance and deductibles for Medicare covered services. Other MA covered services are not covered.


(Legacy) RCA – Relative Custody Assistance. This state program provides monthly financial assistance to income-eligible relatives or people significant to children who accept permanent legal and physical custody of children. These payments are pre-Northstar Kinship Assistance and are being phased out.

Region V Development Commission – (also known as the RDC) The Region V office is in Staples and serves Cass, Crow Wing, Morrison, Todd, and Wadena Counties. They provide a wide variety of technical assistance, ranging from township road recording, zoning ordinances, comprehensive planning, grant writing assistance, transportation, economic development planning, and special projects. A Wadena County Commissioner serves on their board.

Representative Payee – A person or organization, selected by the Social Security Administration, designated to receive benefits on behalf of an RSDI or SSI recipient and obligated to use those benefits for the RSDI or SSI recipient’s personal care and well-being.

Residential Facility – Refers to an out-of-home placement facility for children or adults. This does not include foster care.

Respite Care – Refers to temporary care given to either a child or a handicapped or elderly adult for the purpose of providing the primary caregiver some relief from 24-hour care.

RFP – Request for proposal; used when a state or federal agency provides notice they will accept grant applications for some program.

RLS – Residential Living Solutions (adult foster care provider).

RSDI – The Retirement, Survivor, and Disability Insurance provision of the Social Security Act. Payments are sometimes referred to as RSDI payments, commonly known as Social Security benefits.

RTC – Regional Treatment Center (formerly State Hospital).

Rule – Rules are either the interpretation of laws or the issuance of regulations by agencies that have supervisory authority over our activity. The primary rules we are concerned with are those issued by the Department of Human Services. Rules number well over 100; a compilation of these rules can be found in the office “library.” Frequently quoted rules include: Rule 49, the rule that sets the rate reimbursements system for nursing homes; Rule 52, this establishes the rate reimbursements system for ICF-MR facilities; and Rules 34, 35, and 36, these apply to licensing standards for facilities serving people with developmental disabilities, chemical dependency, and mental illness, respectively. Rules have the force and effect of law.

Rule 12 (Mentally Ill) – Special funding for residents of Rule 36 group homes. It is used for intensive programming and extra staff to increase chances for successful integration back into the community.

Rule 13 – Covers licensing of adult and child foster homes, day care licensing, etc.

Rule 24 – The rule that determines a person’s eligibility for the chemical dependency treatment funds once the need for (and type of) treatment has been determined by Rule 25.

Rule 25 – A standard for chemical dependency assessments that provides specific criteria to determine the level of use or abuse and the most appropriate level of care for alcohol or other drug-related problems.

Rule 78 – State grant money to maintain people with mental illness in the community. This can take the form of day treatment, outreach workers going to the person’s home, or vocational training and support.

Rule 79 – A comprehensive rule for case management of people with mental illness. Rule 79 includes both adults and children.

Rule 185 – A comprehensive rule for case management for people with developmental
disabilities or related conditions.

Rule 186 – Special funding to keep difficult clients with developmental disabilities in


SACWIS – Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System. (SSIS is Minnesota’s SACWIS)

SAM – Security and Access Management System. This is a computer system for county security liaisons and state security staff that is used for managing SMI security.

SDS – Service Delivery System: MAXIS, SSIS, PRISM, MMIS.

SEAGR – Human Services Expenditures and Grant Reconciliation Report.

SED – Severe and emotionally disturbed children. A term used to access children’s mental health services.

SELF – Support for Emancipation and Living Functionally. Federal funds that can be utilized for adolescents age 16 and above who have been in out-of-home placements to assist them in becoming independent.

SeniorCare Complete – A Minnesota Senior Health Options program for persons age 65 or older that live in the South Country Health Alliance service area, and are eligible for Medical Assistance only or are eligible for Medical Assistance and Medicare Parts A and B.

Share-A-Home – A service provider using DD waivered services funds to maintain people with developmental disabilities in their own homes or in corporate foster homes in normal residential areas.

SILS – Semi-Independent Living Skills. This program is designed to provide limited support to adults with developmental disabilities who are living in their own homes.

SIR – Systems Information Repository. This is a shared website that provides information about the SMI and SAM. SIR is the primary communication vehicle for disseminating information about SMI and SAM.

SIS/EW – Special Income Standard allows eligibility expansion of the Elderly Waiver program.

SLBP – Used in connection with special education programs such as a “SLBP” teacher. It stands for Special Learning and Behavioral Problems.

Sliding Fee Day Care – This program offers assistance with day care expenses for eligible non-public assistance families.

Slight Service – Describes the brief files we keep on clients who come in to request services or who are referred to our agency, but who have no need for long-term case management.

SLMB – Service Limited Medicare Beneficiaries. A person eligible for payment of the Medicare Part B premium by the MA program. The person does not have to eligible for MA.

SLS – Supportive Living Services. A service provided by licensed providers to individuals with developmental disabilities who qualify for waivered services. This is a program designed to maintain people with developmental disabilities in their own homes in residential areas of town. The intent is to provide the maximum possible integration.

SMI – Shared Master Index. This is a system developed by DHS to help counties, tribes and DHS manage common client data across state and county systems. SMI provides workers with a common database for client demographic information and a cross-systems view of client participation.

SMRT – State Medical Review Team; determines disabilities.

SNAP – Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (name of food support program). The ‘S’ emphasizes that the program offers benefits are designed to help supplement clients’ monthly food resources, while the ‘N’ stands for providing a nutritional benefit.

SNBC – Special Needs Basic Care – This is a managed care program available for people with disabilities age 18 through 64. SNBC is available in 83 counties in Minnesota. Different health plans are available depending upon the county you live in. It is open to people with all types of disabilities who have Medical Assistance. If you also have Medicare, you must have both Parts A and B.  Managed care means that the health care you get from your health plan is coordinated. Your benefit set for Medical Assistance will not change. Your health plan will take care of most of your health care needs and provide a network of providers for you. They will have a care coordinator or navigator available to help you decide what to do next and help you choose a doctor to see. (See Ability Care and AccessAbility)

SNF – Skilled Nursing Facility. Provides 24-hours-a-day nursing and medical care to patients with chronic physical disabilities requiring constant medical and nursing care.

SOS – State Operated Services.

SPMI – Seriously and Persistently Mentally Ill.

SSA – Social Security Administration.

SSI – Supplemental Security Income. Federal dollars paid to aged, blind, and disabled individuals under Title XVI of the Social Security Act to help pay their living expenses.

SSIS – Social Services Information System. A system developed in 1995 by DHS that partially replaced CSIS. It is used to pay vendors for social services, submit claims to Medical Assistance, complete federal and state reports, and serve as a case management tool for social workers.

SSPS – Social Service Payment System. A fiscal management system that is a component of CSIS. It is used to pay vendors, produce accounting and management reports, monitor contracts, and meet state and federal reporting requirements.

SSTS – Social Service Time Study, also known as Random Moment Time Study. Periodic times are assigned by DHS when someone must ask each member of the social service staff what they are doing. The information is used as part of a formula in determining reimbursement for IV-E training and IV-E, MA, and MFIP child care.

State Ward – Any child or handicapped adult under the guardianship of the Commissioner of Human Services as the result of a court action.

Statute – Refers to our state and federal laws.


TANF – The federal name for MFIP – Temporary Aid for Needy Families.

Title – Many programs are identified by their titles, which are sections of various pieces of federal legislation. For example, we are involved in a number of titles of the Social Security Act. Title IV-A is the TANF program. Title IV-B is the Child Welfare program. Title IV-D is the Support and Collections program. Title XIX is Medical Assistance, and Title XX is the Social Service program. Title XVIII is the provision for Medicare, and this is also part of the Social Security Act. Some other titles referred to may be Title I, II, III, IV, or V, which are Special Education Funds available to school districts.

Title IV-E – Part of the Social Security Act that provides federal reimbursement for a portion of maintenance costs for eligible children in substitute care. Title IV-E also provides reimbursement for administrative costs related to substitute care placements.

Title XIX – Medical Assistance.

TPR – Termination of Parental Rights. This is the legal term used to describe the process by which all parental rights to a child are terminated. This process can be done either voluntarily or involuntarily upon the filing of a petition for termination of parental rights and subsequent court determination.

TRICARE – Health plan for those in the military and their dependents.


UIFSA – Uniform Interstate Family Support Act.

URESA – Uniform Reciprocal Enforcement of Support Action.

USDA – U.S. Department of Agriculture, which administers the Food Support program through the FNS (Food and Nutrition Service).


VA – Veterans Administration, the federal agency that supplies VA benefits and also medical care through the VA Hospitals. VA can also mean vulnerable adult.

VA/DD – TCM – Vulnerable Adult/Developmental Disabilities – Targeted Case Management. Services are provided on behalf of a vulnerable adult or person with developmental disabilities. These are services intended to coordinate and link social and other services, designed to help gain access to needed protective services, social, health care, mental health, habilitative, educational, vocational, recreational, advocacy, legal, chemical, health and other related services.

Verification – Verification is the term used to describe the checking that we do on the information given in certain applications. Information presented in a social service application is not verified unless the worker has reason to doubt the completeness of the information. The information on a financial assistance application (such as for MFIP or food support) is verified 100%. This is obtained through bank checks, income tax reports, check stubs, birth certificates, etc.

Videoconference – A videoconference is a live connection between people in separate locations for the purpose of communication, usually involving audio and often text as well as video. The tangible benefits for businesses using videoconferencing include lower travel costs and profits gained from offering videoconferencing as an aspect of customer service. (Also called ITV or interactive TV or internet TV.) We have a  videoconference system in the boardroom that is used for meetings and training purposes.

VSO – Veterans Service Officer or Office.

Vulnerable Adult – A vulnerable adult is any person, 18 years of age of older, who is: 1) A resident or inpatient of a healthcare facility or receives services from a licensed home care provider or a person or organization that provides personal care assistance under the state’s medical assistance program. 2) An individual who lives at home or in a facility and is unable or unlikely to report maltreatment of him or herself because of a physical or mental infirmity or other physical, mental or emotional dysfunction that impairs a person’s ability to provide adequately for his or her own care without assistance.

Vulnerable Adult Protection Team – An interdisciplinary team working together to facilitate the identification of possible abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation of vulnerable adults; facilitate the coordination of community services in identified situations, make recommendations to appropriate agencies concerning intervention in identified situations, and educate the community on abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation of vulnerable adults.

Vulnerable Children and Adults Act (VCA) – The mandated, biennial process of determining needs, services, goals, and priorities. The primary purpose is to keep vulnerable children and adults safe and improve their well-being. The service plan provides a summary of ongoing needs of vulnerable children and adults, resources available to address these needs, budgeting of allocated resources, and community participation in the planning and development of the service plan.


Waiver – Medical Assistance Waiver allows the county to become an MA vendor for non-medical needs of qualifying individuals. MA is paying for a service not normally covered by MA.

WB – Work Bonus. This program rewards families leaving Diversionary Work Program (DWP) or Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) with $25 monthly for a maximum of 24 consecutive months with required work hours.

Workgroup – A workgroup in SSIS consists of one or more clients, receiving one or more services within one program, with one or more workers assigned.