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Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham

Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham

  • Bellingham, WA
  • Drug Detox
  • Inpatient
  • Outpatient

Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham, located in Bellingham, WA, provides comprehensive care for adults with severe and persistent mental illnesses. This non-profit organization specializes in dual diagnosis treatment and operates various facilities, including the 67-bed Agate Heights Assisted Living Facility surrounded by a wildlife sanctuary.

LWC's mission is to facilitate independence, health, and fulfillment for adults with chronic mental illnesses through residential care and community outpatient programs. They focus on a psychosocial rehabilitation model to achieve these goals.

  • Offers residential treatment and assisted living on a serene 125-acre wildlife sanctuary.
  • Provides comprehensive outpatient services, including intensive outpatient programs and community case management.
  • Utilizes evidence-based therapies and individualized treatment plans for effective care.
  • Supports patients with employment and medical services to aid in holistic recovery.

LWC serves adults struggling with severe mental illnesses and substance use disorders, including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Their services most benefit those needing integrated mental health and substance abuse treatment.

  • 10 Conditions Treated
  • LGBTQ+ Allied
  • Insurance Accepted
  • 5 Levels of Care
  • Speaks English
  • 21 Therapies & Programs
  • Multiple Locations


  • Jenny BillingsExecutive DirectorOversees operations and strategic direction of Lake Whatcom Center's mental health programs.
  • Terrance EllisonHuman Resources DirectorManages HR functions and employee relations for Lake Whatcom Center.
  • Stephanie ZapienFinance and IT DirectorDirects financial operations and information technology systems for the organization.
  • Dean LampmanQuality Management DirectorOversees quality assurance and improvement initiatives for Lake Whatcom Center's programs.
  • Tannis PeuraOperations DirectorManages day-to-day operations across Lake Whatcom Center's facilities and programs.
  • Angela BelcasterMedical DirectorProvides medical oversight and direction for Lake Whatcom Center's treatment programs.
  • Andrew HovendenOutpatient Program ManagerManages outpatient mental health services and community programs for clients.
  • Lafarro WilliamsResidential Program ManagerOversees residential treatment facilities and programs for Lake Whatcom Center.

Conditions and Issues Treated

Substance Abuse + Addiction Treatment

Substance abuse typically leads to addiction, which requires specialized treatment programs at Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham to address. Many people benefit from inpatient drug rehabilitation, which includes inpatient acute care and residential rehabilitation. Other levels of care include intensive outpatient therapy, individual counseling, and support groups. Family therapy is also an essential part of treatment for substance abuse.

A combination of treatments is often needed to treat drug abuse issues effectively. In the case of drug abuse, there is no easy answer or one-size-fits-all cure.


Substance use disorder falls under two categories: Alcohol or Drug Abuse and Drug Dependence. An individual suffering from a substance use disorder and mental health disorders is said to have a co-occurring disorder or a dual disorder.

Individuals with substance use disorders and mental health problems are said to suffer from a ‘dual diagnosis’. The most frequently identified mental health issues found in individuals with substance use disorders include anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and schizoaffective disorder.

Levels of Care

This center offers a variety of custom treatment tailored to individual recovery. Currently available are Detox, Dual-Diagnosis, Inpatient, Outpatient, Residential, with additional therapies available as listed below.

Detox is a drug rehab process that is designed to remove the drug addict from the drug safely. The problem with solely using detox as a sobriety tool is that it alone provides no therapy or counseling. If a person goes through detox and returns to their everyday life, they may begin using again once the detox has worn off.

Detox does not help with cravings, so for some addicts, this can be extremely difficult and should be both done and supervised by medical professionals. Aftercare is crucial, so selecting a facility that offers additional services is important.

Inpatient treatment for addiction is generally not as scary as it might sound. It is a way to find recovery while being in a supportive and controlled environment. The duration of treatment at Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham in Bellingham can be different based on each individual. Many can leave after 28 days; some may stay a few months, and others may stay six months or longer.

When remaining at their job in Bellingham, or continuing their studies, the individual may live with their family while utilizing Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham‘s outpatient services. Treatment requires counseling the patient at the individual level, in a group setting, about substance addiction, drugs, and therapy sessions.

Residential treatment programs are those that offer housing and meals in addition to substance abuse treatment. Rehab facilities that offer residential treatment allow patients to focus solely on recovery, in an environment totally separate from their lives. Some rehab centers specialize in short-term residential treatment (a few days to a week or two), while others solely provide treatment on a long-term basis (several weeks to months). Some offer both, and tailor treatment to the patient’s individual requirements.

Therapies & Programs

Individual professional counseling or individual therapy refers to the one-on-one interaction between a patient and his or her counselor at Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham in Bellingham, Washington. Individual therapy allows for more privacy, one that group interactions can’t provide. It makes it easier for the counselor and the patient to deal with the central issues, which are likely the culprits of substance addiction.

Family therapy is a set of therapeutic approaches that assumes that the entire family is a system. It utilizes the strengths and resources of the family to help the patient refrain from resorting to substance abuse. The impact of substance abuse is not just on the patient but on the entire family. Family therapy ensures that the patient gets adequate support from the family members after the treatment making the recovery process sustainable

  • Family therapy guides all the members of the family to help the patient.
  • It helps to repair relationships and improve communication between family members.
  • It helps to keep the patient engaged and motivated throughout the treatment.

Group therapy is an important tool in recovery. Finding a peer group in Bellingham, WA and others who relate to your situation is a fundamental tool for recovery at Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham. Addiction tends to lead to isolation and feelings of uniqueness. The accountability and friendship that is found in group therapy can be more effective than any single other treatment approach. This is generally introduced early in recovery and is recommended as a lifetime treatment habit.

Trauma therapy is a way of addressing trauma while in a safe situation in order to heal. This may involve Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham managing individual or group counseling or both. Other forms of therapy have been proven to assist in healing past traumas.

Negative feelings are common in substance abuse disorders. If not recognized, they can cause co-occurring disorders. CBT involves strategies that help to change the thinking and behavioral pattern. It can be administered as a monotherapy as well as a part of combination therapy.

Rehabilitation is not just limited to bringing an individual out of addiction and achieving sobriety. It is considered complete only when an individual starts leading a normal and balanced life. Life skill therapy focuses on the various skills that help an individual to lead a normal life. Patients often do not take care of themselves, struggle professionally, and withdraw from social interaction due to addiction’s physical and emotional disturbances.

Life skills therapy helps people in Washington improve various personal, professional, and social skills such as cooking healthy meals, maintaining proper hygiene, budgeting, decision-making, time management, regulation of emotions, and effectively resolving interpersonal conflicts.

Nutrition therapy, also called medical nutrition therapy (MNT), addresses the unique needs of the recovering person’s diet. Due to addiction’s devastating toll on a person’s physical health, healthy eating must be addressed as soon as therapy starts. A good diet helps boosts a recovering person’s ability to fully participate in Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham therapy.

Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is a treatment that helps people to quit smoking. In nicotine replacement therapy, a controlled amount of nicotine is provided in the form of gums, patches, or sprays. They do not contain the harmful chemicals usually found in tobacco products. NRT reduces the withdrawal symptoms by giving nicotine in low doses. However, NRT provides relief only from the physical withdrawal symptoms. The emotional and psychological aspects of quitting needs to be treated separately. While NRT is safe for most adults, teens and pregnant women should not undergo NRT. Research shows that the use of NRT doubles the chances of quitting smoking.

Patient Experience

Experiential Therapy at Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham

Experiential therapy works by using tools and activities to recreate past experiences. Role-playing, arts and crafts, music, animal care, rock climbing, etc. are some of the activities used in this therapy. It is different from medication and talk therapy and suits those who have difficulty expressing themselves.

Payment Options

For specific insurance or payment methods please contact us.
  • Health Insurance
  • Self-Pay / Cash
  • Medicare
  • Medicaid
  • Military Insurance
  • IHS/Tribunal/Urban
  • State-Financed
  • Sliding Scale
  • Is your insurance accepted?
    Ask an expert, call (888) 674-0062

    Location & Contact

    Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham Location and Directions
    3400 Agate Heights Rd
    Bellingham, WA 98226

    Phone Number
    (360) 676-6000

    Additional Locations

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    Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment - Bellingham Location and Directions



    • Gender
      Female, Male
    • Age
      Adults (20+), Seniors (65+), Teenagers
    • Modality
      Family, Group, Individuals

    Lake Whatcom Residential Treatment

    Listed May 29, 2021

    Updated July 6, 2024

    Bellingham, Washington Addiction and Treatment

    Washington's substance use, abuse, and addiction rates have followed the trends of the rest of the over the past years. Methamphetamine abuse is the biggest threat to Washington. Heroin-related overdoses increased by almost 450% from 2006 to 2016. 20% of all annual deaths in Washington are somehow drug and/or alcohol-related. Drugs are widely abused in Washington because they are easily trafficked in and out of the state.

    Bellingham, nestled in northwest Washington, offers a serene setting for drug rehab treatment with its scenic beauty and outdoor recreation. The city boasts a thriving arts scene, cultural attractions, and a strong sense of community. However, Whatcom County has seen a 25% increase in opioid-related emergency room visits and a 30% rise in fentanyl-related overdose deaths between 2020 and 2024.

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