Behavioral Health


Behavioral Health Services Provided by Klickitat County

Klickitat County serves as a licensed Behavioral Health Agency that provides a narrow scope of behavioral health services to county residents. Specifically, Klickitat County Behavioral Health (KCBH) will be providing Designated Crisis Responder (DCR) services for individuals experiencing a behavioral health crisis. 

About Designated Crisis Responders (DCR) and Eligible Services

The purpose of a DCR is to evaluate people experiencing a behavioral health disorder for immediate safety planning or involuntary detention in psychiatric and secure withdrawal facilities. This service is in accordance with the State of Washington law RCW 71.05 (adults) and RCW 71.34 (persons ages 13 - 17 years of age). These critical services will be available 24-hours a day, 365-days a year.

DCRs are specialists among mental health professionals. They are trained and privileged by the county.  Each of them is committed to providing services with dignity and respect.  They do this by conducting a holistic and collaborative assessment of the individual in crisis in order to help guide and when appropriate refer to services most compatible for the situation.

How to Get Help

If you or someone you know is in crisis you have multiple options. If the situation is threatening to someone’s life or property, call 911 for police assistance. You or the person you are concerned about can also go to the emergency room at any hospital near you. 

If there is no immediate physical danger, individuals can call the regional crisis line at 1-800-626-8137. Crisis Connections operates the 24/7/365 regional crisis line for Southwest Washington, and Klickitat County. The crisis hotline will triage, screen, and conduct an assessment of needs for the caller, and help connect individuals to the appropriate resources which may include a DCR. 

About Voluntary or Involuntary Psychiatric Hospitalization

If you or someone you know is suffering from mental illness, treatment in a hospital setting is necessary and beneficial. When somebody receives inpatient treatment, it means that they are hospitalized and may need a short stay for stabilization to occur. This could be because they are at risk for harming themselves or others. It could also mean that their physical health is being negatively impacted by the severity of their mental illness or exposure to drugs.

During a hospital stay, each person gets a mental health evaluation which includes a physical health and substance abuse screening. Mental health professionals help develop a holistic treatment plan with the individual which may include the help of family members or loved ones. The goal is to provide a comprehensive plan that will aid recovery once they return home. Some of the services in the hospital may include therapy and medications. 

Hospital stays can vary in length. Voluntary admissions on average last from 10 - 14 days while involuntary admissions tend to last longer. The length of stay is determined by the needs of the patient and how long they would like to stay. In some special cases, a judge determines the length of stay for a person hospitalized involuntarily or seeks the help of hospital staff to determine length of stay.

After hospitalization, there are other resources available to the individual to help them stay mentally healthy depending on their need and eligibility. Services may include: outpatient therapy, post hospital stabilization services, mental health service programs, or a chemical dependency program.

Other Resources and Links

Another resource for individuals in acute distress or experiencing thoughts of suicide is the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. If you are someone you know is contemplating suicide or is in emotional distress, the new hotline can be reached by dialing 988. The 988, Suicide & Crisis Lifeline has over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free 988 hotline. 

For More Information:

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Klickitat County Behavioral Health Mission & Vision Statement

Klickitat County Behavioral Health is committed to the wellness of individuals, their families, and the community through prevention, intervention, treatment, and education.  Our vision is to improve the lives of those living with mental illness or addiction by providing services that are supportive of individuals and their families. We strive to provide an emotionally supportive and helpful environment necessary to improve the quality of life for all Klickitat County residents and those living in the Columbia Gorge.