Student Behavioral Health Clinic

At the Student Behavioral Health Clinic, we recognize that emotional and psychological health are important factors in a student’s ability to perform well academically and adjust socially.  Students may face many stressors from learning to live with roommates to choosing a career path.

At times, changes and adjustments can lead to emotional difficulties that can in turn affect a student’s ability to function at his or her best.  The Behavioral Health Clinic can help with a variety of issues and concerns students may face as they try to navigate through college life.  All services and sessions are confidential.

All students who are eligible for services at the Student Health Center are eligible for an evaluation in Behavioral Health.  There is no charge for WWU full time students or part time students who pay the health fee.

The Behavioral Health Clinic can offer an initial assessment.  However, the Behavioral Health Clinic does not have adequate resources to treat all types of psychological or psychiatric problems.  Certain students will require more specialized or comprehensive treatment than we can offer and might be referred to resources in the community following an initial evaluation. 

We work closely with the WWU Counseling Center staff and private therapists in the community to ensure that our students utilize counseling therapy as well as medications as needed to manage their symptoms. 

ADHD:  The Behavioral Health Clinic evaluates and treats students with previously diagnosed Attention Deficit Disorder.  In order to be treated at WWU for this condition, there are a number of requirements that a student must fulfill.  With the exception of prescription medication, all patients must be substance free, including marijuana, in order to receive treatment through this clinic.

Emotional Support Animal:  Some students with behavioral health concerns may benefit from having an emotional support animal.  The Behavioral Health Clinic does provide documentation for Emotional Support Animals as long as the student meets diagnostic criteria for a mental health disability.  We are here to help.  Please review our ESA web page before calling for an appointment.

Behavioral Health Clinic Staff

The Behavioral Health Clinic is staffed by primary care providers with special interest and training in mental health medication management, along with part-time psychiatric consultants who are available on a limited basis, only on referral by one of our providers or the Counseling Center. 

What to Expect

Evaluation

The first visit to the Behavioral Health Clinic usually involves a discussion of the student’s background and nature of the current problem.  This helps clarify the student’s needs and develop a treatment plan.  As noted above, the treatment plan may include treatment at the Behavioral Health Clinic or the WWU Counseling Center or referral to resources in the community.

Treatment

Evaluation, brief crisis intervention and medication management are offered for a host of difficulties, including but not limited to:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Drug and alcohol abuse
  • Eating disorders
  • Attention difficulties
  • Stress
  • Grief
  • Self-harming behaviors

Consultation and Outreach

Members of the Behavioral Health Clinic staff are available to consult with students, faculty and staff on behavioral health issues.  Staff members may also give presentations to campus organizations and groups on a variety of behavioral health topics as time allows.  
For further information, or to schedule an appointment, call 360-650-3400.

FAQs

Do I have to have a serious problem to come to the Behavioral Health Service?
No.  Students come to the Behavioral Health Clinic for many different reasons including concerns about self-esteem, personal relationships, sexuality, family problems, substance abuse, eating problems, academic concerns, smoking cessation, anxiety, depression and stress management.  Whatever your concerns are, we are willing to talk with you. 

Is there a charge for appointments?
There is no charge for full-time students or part-time students who pre-pay the student health fee.  We do not see individuals who are not enrolled as students at WWU.  

How do I make an appointment?
Call 360-650-3400 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m. and ask for an appointment with Behavioral Health.  

How soon can I see someone?
At the beginning of the quarter, you can probably get an appointment within a few days.  As the quarter progresses, the clinic is very busy.  We will schedule you as soon as possible, but the wait may be up to one week.  We suggest that you call as soon as you feel you need help, rather than waiting until later.

How do I know that I need help?
Generally, if you have been having problems for two weeks or more, you have tried to address your concerns without success and your problems interfere with your ability to function the way you would like to, then you should consider seeking help.  Problems can include trouble with a relationship, not doing well in school, insomnia, moodiness, tension, irritability or loss of interest in friends or school.  

What about medication?
Medication can be very helpful for treating a number of problems.  The psychiatric providers on staff can make recommendations if you are in need of medications.  If not, you may be referred to appropriate counseling on campus or in the community of Bellingham.  

What is the policy on confidentiality?
Your behavioral health records are confidential.  We do not release records without your written permission. 

Other Helpful Links

NAMI Whatcom (National Alliance for Mental Illness, Whatcom County chapter) http://www.namiwhatcom.org/
The Jed Foundation: www.jedfoundation.org
National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI):  www.namiwhatcom.org
Depression Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA):  www.dbsalliance.org
The Sam Spady Foundation:  www.samspadyfoundation.org
Anxiety and Depression Association of America:  www.adaa.org
National Institutes of Mental Health:  www.nimh.nih.gov