Inpatient Hospital Services

You don’t need to get prior authorization for emergency services. But you do need approval for ongoing treatment.

You do need prior authorization for non-emergency inpatient hospital services.

Emergency Services

TRICARE covers emergency inpatient hospital services when:

  • You have a medical or psychiatric emergency
  • You need immediate hospital admission

You will get treatment at the closest hospital that can provide your care.

If you have a mental health or substance use disorder, we will cover emergency inpatient hospital services for:

  • Management of withdrawal symptoms (Detoxification)
  • Your stabilization
  • Any medical complications you may have from your disorder 

Non-emergency Services

We cover inpatient psychiatric hospitalization for:

  • Diagnosis and treatment of mental health
  • Substance use disorders

You may get care in:

  • Private psychiatric hospitals
  • Local, state, or federal government psychiatric hospitals

These facilities help you with management of mental health conditions that require:

  • Around the clock care
  • Medically monitored treatment

You may receive approval for inpatient psychiatric hospitalization, if you:

  • Pose a serious risk of harm to yourself or others
  • Need specialized medication
  • Need psychological treatment
  • Have a significant impairment in functioning
  • Need to be in a hospital full-time
  • Are unable to maintain yourself in the community with only outpatient services


Last Updated 10/3/2018