Quality Behavioral Crisis Care, Enhanced Patient and Provider Experience, Reduced Cost.


What is DEC?

DEC stands for Diagnostic Evaluation Center, and it is a process that is used to better assist patients who are experiencing a behavioral crisis.

Components & Description:

  • Diagnostic: A licensed mental health professional diagnoses and documents via a web-based state-of-the-art software system, which meets HIPPA and HITECH standards.
  • Evaluation: A licensed mental health professional determines the most appropriate level of care in collaboration with the patient's care team.
  • Center: Release of assessment to provider using store-and-forward technology. Coordinate appointment scheduling and community resources. Personal follow-up with patient within 24 hours.

DEC Benefits:

  • Reduced Liability: The DEC Application provides a documentation framework that is easy to use, comprehensive and requires completion of all pertinent data fields to demonstrate and support medical necessity criteria. Included in the tool are Safety and Follow-up Plans which increase patient safety while reducing hospital liability.
  • Cost Reduction: The DEC Application reduces cost by avoiding unnecessary inpatient admissions, reducing long wait times and preventing re-admissions to the Emergency Department.
  • Bed Access Support: We do the work for you! Our clinicians search for available inpatient options when the recommended care is mental health or detox admission.  Bed access results are then shared with the requesting site’s care team.
  • Advanced Care Coordination: With permission, the DEC Application provides store-and-forward record sharing capabilities that enhances collaboration between a patient’s treating providers. Integration with the SchedulR (a web-based appointment scheduling tool) provides access to appropriate community resources 24/7.
  • Optimizes Staff Time: The experienced DEC professional assists your care team by assessing behavioral patients, documenting medical necessity, finding inpatient beds and connecting patients to outpatient resources. This allows staff to spend more time performing at the top of their license, providing care to other patients in need.
  • Quality Patient Care: The DEC Application improves patient care by providing robust care-planning options and a framework for post-assessment follow-up. Providers can feel more confident that the appropriate care decisions are being made and documented, and patients have access to timely follow-up care.
  • Data Integration: The DEC Application was built on a modern technology platform that uses HL7 standards to allow integration with most electronic medical record applications. If integration is not desired, the DEC Application also produces a PDF file of the completed assessment that can be incorporated into the patient's EMR.

Participating DEC Locations:


  • CentraCare Health - Monticello
  • Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota
    • Minneapolis Campus Emergency Department
    • St. Paul Campus Emergency Department
  • Fairview Lakes Medical Center
  • Fairview Northland Medical Center
  • Fairview Range Medical Center
  • Fairview Ridges Hospital
  • Fairview Southdale Hospital
  • Glencoe Regional Health Services
  • Maple Grove Hospital - NEW FEBRUARY 2019!
  • Mayo Clinic Health System
    • Albert Lea Emergency Department
    • Albert Lea Special Care Unit
    • Austin Emergency Department
    • Austin Intensive Care Unit
    • Cannon Falls Emergency Department
    • Fairmont Emergency Department
    • Lake City Emergency Department
    • New Prague Emergency Department
    • Red Wing Emergency Department
    • Springfield Emergency Department
    • St. James Emergency Department
    • Waseca Emergency Department
  • Mille Lacs Health System
  • Northfield Hospital & Clinics
  • Rice Memorial Hospital
  • University of Minnesota Medical Center
    • East Bank Emergency Dept.
    • West Bank Emergency Department



  • Independent School District 13
  • Independent School District 196
  • Independent School District 621
  • Independent School District 831
  • Intermediate School District 916
  • Intermediate School District 917

Assisted Living Facilities:

  • Fairview Partners

Frequently Asked Questions

1Can I purchase the DEC Tool/Software?
The DEC software can be purchased for your service system. Please contact Avtex Solutions, LLC, our technology partner since 2002. Please call 800-323-3639 for more information.