Cherokee Mental Health Institute

The Cherokee Mental Health Institute provides active inpatient treatment to adults, adolescents and children who are in need of acute psychiatric service.

Who is eligible to receive services: 

Admissions are accepted from any county in our catchment area, including Title 19, Merit, Medicare and private insurance coverage that meets the Hospital criteria. The patient must meet at least two of the following criteria for the nonphysican reviewer to approve the admission.

  • Suicidal indication (within last 48 hours) necessitating 24-hour professional observation supported by medical record documentation.

  • Assaultive intent and/or behavior with significant threat to the safety of self or others (within last 48 hours) necessitating 24-hour professional observation supported by medical record documentation.

  • Documented failure of current outpatient treatment necessitating 24-hour professional observation supported by medical documentation.

  • Monitoring of psychotropic medication with documented onset of severe side effects in the presence of complicating medical and/or psychiatric conditions necessitating observation and assessment by a professional nurse.

  • Need for 24-hour professional observation, evaluation and /or diagnosis of a patient exhibiting behaviors consistent with acute psychiatric disorder, which may include significant mental status changes. There needs to be documented evidence that no medical condition would account for the symptoms.

If the patient does not meet criteria, the case must be referred to a physician reviewer for a medical necessity determination.

How to apply for services or refer someone to this facility: 

Application for services go through the Central Point Coordinators from the county of residence.

How to get more information:

Cherokee Mental Health Institute
1251 West Cedar Loop
Cherokee, IA 51012

Structure of the organization: 

The facility is operated by the Iowa Department of Human Services, under the directorship of Charles M. Palmer and under the leadership of Richard Shults, Administrator, Division of Mental Health and Disability Services.  The facility's superintendent is Cory Turner.

Services provided:

Inpatient psychiatric services for adults and for children and adolescents are provided. 

People served: 

The facility is located in Cherokee and serves adults for forty-one counties in northwest Iowa and children and adolescents for fifty-five counties.

Adult                          Children and Adolescents
Catchment Area       Catchment Area

Other information: 

Clinical staff assistance is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

Cherokee MHI provides transportation by trained and qualified staff for discharged patients as needed.

Cherokee MHI is accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organization (JCAHO) and certified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

Tours of the facility are available by appointment to schools, groups, and other organizations.  Please contact the facility by calling 712-225-6919 or writing for tour arrangements:

MHI clinical staff holds seminars on mental health issues to provide families, consumers and health care professionals with information on the symptoms, cause and treatment of mental illnesses.