What Happens at Arrival

When your child arrives at North Star Behavioral Health, they will be greeted by our receptionist who will provide the parent and/or guardian with initial paperwork to complete (10-15 minutes):

  • Intake Comprehensive Assessment Tool –Demographic information
  • Intake Comprehensive Assessment Tool –Behavioral Checklist
  • Intake Comprehensive Assessment Tool –Communicable Disease Questionnaire
  • Receipt of Notice of Privacy Practice

Once initial paperwork is completed, the family will meet with one of our Masters Level Clinicians from our Intake Department who will conduct an intake assessment to determine admission eligibility. The intake assessment can take 1 ½ to 3 ½ hours to complete.

The intake process entails:

  • A comprehensive assessment
  • Consultation with the psychiatrist, if the assessment identifies the acute level of care is indicated, to determine if the child meets criteria for admission. If the child is admitted, this will include doctor’s orders for admission (up to 30 minutes)
  • If it has been determined that the child is recommended for inpatient acute treatment, intake staff will sit with the parent and/or guardian to review and sign consents.
  • Intake staff will inventory all clothing (some items are not allowed on the unit and are called contraband). 5 days of clothing is needed, more than this should go back home with the parent and/or guardian. Contraband items will be sent home to the parent and/or guardian. A list of appropriate and contraband items are provided in the North Star handbook

Note: If someone who is not the parent and/or guardian escorts a child, the assessment cannot start without a parent and/or guardian’s consent.

During the assessment process the parent and/or guardian will be provided with a North Star Behavioral Health handbook. This resource will present information on the program and help provide answers to questions that that you and your family may have. The child will be given program information and begin the orientation process.

Within 24 hours after admission, the child will meet with:

  • A nurse to complete the nursing assessment. The nursing assessment is usually 30-45 minutes depending on the child. For younger children, the parent and/or guardian may be part of the assessment.
  • A Physician Assistant to complete a physical and obtain medical history (up to 1 hour).
  • A psychiatrist to complete the initial psychiatric evaluation (up to 1 hour).

Within 72 hours, the child will meet with:

  • Therapist to start psychosocial assessment: The psychosocial assessment has many of the same questions, but asks more questions about family relationships, school, and clinical goals (up to 30 minutes).
    • Note: If a patient is admitted after 12pm, patient will be assigned a therapist the next business day. If a patient is admitted on Friday after 12pm, they will be assigned a therapist on Monday.
  • Activity/Recreational Therapy staff specialist will complete an activity assessment to determine recreation and art activities that will best meet the child’s needs.

Within 5 days, the child will meet with:

  • A dietician who will complete a dietary assessment to determine nutritional needs (10-15 minutes). *Allergies are assessed at admission and information is provided to dietitians.

During hospital stay:

The child will be assigned a clinical treatment team, which includes a psychiatrist, nurse, therapist, and case manager all of whom will discuss your child’s case. Treatment teams meet according to the following schedule unless special events occur.

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday:
Williwaw Trail—Children and Pioneer Trail—Preteen

Monday and Wednesday:
Coastal Trail—Adolescent boys

Why might different staff ask my child the same questions?
We want to be as thorough as possible as we work with your child to develop their individualized treatment plan.


There is hope. Let us help.

Call 907-264-3506 if you or a loved one struggles with psychiatric issues or substance abuse. We are here 24/7 to provide no-cost, confidential assessments and discuss treatment options. You may also message us using our online contact form.

Please dial 911 or seek the nearest emergency room if you have an emergency.