Sanford Health Behavioral Health Bemidji

Sanford Health Behavioral Health Bemidji

The Substance Use Disorder program offers comprehensive assessments and outpatient intensive substance use treatment.

To meet with our team, follow these steps:

  1. Complete a diagnostic assessment form.
  2. Schedule an appointment with one of our mental health providers to discuss your assessment.
  3. Schedule follow-up appointments based on your first appointment and assessment.

Please bring the following to your first appointment:

  • Insurance information
  • Social Security number
  • Health care provider information
  • A list of current medications
  • Documents related to court orders if applicable
  • Established legal guardian accompaniment for minor children

Appointments are required.

Sanford Health accepts most insurance plans. If you have Medicare or United Behavioral Health (UBH), please call your insurance plan to ask about coverage.

Our other behavioral health locations in Bemidji include:

Sanford Health Behavioral Health Bemidji Doctors

Preparing for Your Visit


Assertive Community Treatment

Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is a form of case management. It offers community-based treatment to people with severe and persistent mental illness.

The Headwaters ACT multidisciplinary team is organized as mobile mental health service providers.

We offer treatment, rehabilitation and support services to people diagnosed with a severe mental illness. Our goal is to help clients live successfully in the community. Services are continuous and long-term. We can contact clients as often as necessary, sometimes 10 or more times a week. Each client gets to know multiple members of the team, and we can meet clients wherever they need our services.

We work to:

  • Lessen or eliminate the debilitating symptoms of mental illness and minimize or prevent repeated acute episodes of the illness.
  • Reduce or eliminate hospital stays or jail time.
  • Meet the client’s basic needs and enhance their quality of life.
  • Improve the client’s functioning in their social life, employment and activities.
  • Lessen the family’s responsibility of providing care.

We help clients in these areas:

  • Activities of daily living
  • Housing
  • Family life
  • Employment
  • Benefits
  • Managing finances
  • Health care
  • Medications
  • Co-occurring disorders
  • Counseling

Our services are designed for adults with psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder or major depressive disorder with psychotic features. Patients with a primary diagnosis of a substance abuse disorder, a developmental disability, borderline personality disorder, traumatic brain injury or autism spectrum disorder are not eligible for Headwaters ACT services.

Clients who are referred for Headwaters ACT services are reviewed by the team with a diagnostic assessment and a functional assessment. Most Headwaters ACT clients (80%) must be diagnosed with a psychotic disorder, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder or major depressive disorder with psychotic features.

Headwaters ACT is a rehabilitation service, not a crisis service, but we will be involved in managing a current client’s crisis.

The Minnesota Department of Human Services limits the number of clients accepted into the program per month, as well as the total number of clients served.

Call (218) 333-2220 learn more.

Substance Use Disorder

The Substance Use Disorder program offers comprehensive assessments (previously referred to as a Rule 25) and outpatient intensive substance use treatment.

The program offers:

  • Assessments
  • Treatment coordination
  • Treatment planning
  • Group therapy
  • Individual substance use counseling

Chemical Dependency Outpatient Group
Chemical dependency outpatient and intensive outpatient services use best practices and trauma-informed care. Our program offers both abstinence-based and harm reduction-based services. Services are personalized to the client.

We specialize in treating people struggling with substance use disorders and mental health problems. We offer women’s, men’s, co-ed groups, MAT groups, adolescent, cultural and skills-based groups. More groups will be added as the need for them grows.

Comprehensive Assessment Procedures and Client Responsibilities
Before attending the appointment for a comprehensive assessment (previously referred to as a Rule 25), please be sure to have a minimum of two collateral contacts and sign releases for them.

If the assessment is court-ordered due to a DWI or DUI, there will be a cash requirement for services. You must bring information related to ignition interlock if the state requires documentation.

Please arrive at your first assessment appointment 30 minutes early to complete the necessary paperwork.

To make an appointment, please call (218) 333-2006.

Adult Rehabilitative Mental Health Services

Adult Rehabilitative Mental Health Services (ARMHS) is a community-based service that assists adults in managing mental health symptoms while living in the community. Services are available in Beltrami and Cass counties and are generally provided in the home or community and in an individual or group setting. We offer:

Individualized Skills Training

  • Preventing relapse and hospitalization
  • Communicating with others
  • Managing and maintaining a home
  • Gaining access to community resources
  • Learning about budgeting and nutrition
  • Managing and preventing a mental health crisis
  • Coping with mental health symptoms
  • Accessing and arranging transportation

Medication Education

  • Learning the role and effects of medications
  • Awareness of common side effects

Peer Support Services

  • Connecting with someone else who has recovered from mental health symptoms and leads a successful, fulfilling life
  • Helping enhance and practice skills
  • Hearing what has worked for someone else
  • Learning how to share your own story

Children’s Therapeutic Services and Supports

Early detection and treatment of behavioral health concerns is key to addressing the emotional and behavioral needs of our children. We work with children ages 5-18 in diagnosing and treating behavioral health needs while assisting the child and family on a path to overall wellness.

Children's Therapeutic Services and Supports (CTSS) is a program designed to assist children in addressing behavioral and emotional needs. CTSS addresses conditions of emotional disturbance that impair and interfere with an individual's ability to function independently. We meet children and families where they are in their journey and walk alongside them to regain independence. We offer:

  • Case management
  • Family skills
  • Family therapy
  • Group skills
  • Individual skills

Services are offered in the office setting, in the home, in the community or in the Bemidji School District #31 elementary schools and the Schoolcraft Learning Community. Services also may be available at Bemidji Middle School, Bemidji High School, Trek North and Voyageurs charter schools – ask your school about availability.

Mental Health Crisis Response Services

Mobile Crisis Response Services
Immediate help is available to relieve distress and access the support you need. Mobile Crisis Response Services offers mental health services and support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Our services include mental health crisis assessment, intervention and community stabilization services for adults, children and families.

We offer services in a safe and mutually agreed upon location such as the home, school, medical center and more. We aim to use the least restrictive intervention and keep clients in their community. We help patients access local services and resources, including chemical health support

Crisis Response Team
The Crisis Response Team includes mental health professionals and practitioners with specialized training in responding to mental health crises and emergencies. Counties served by this team include: Beltrami, Clearwater, Hubbard and Lake of the Woods.

Mental Health Crisis
A mental health crisis is a behavioral, emotional or psychiatric situation that would likely result in significantly reduced levels of functioning. This includes difficulty with:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Caring for or keeping oneself safe
  • Coping with a stressful or traumatic event
  • Hallucinations or delusions
  • Physical or verbal aggression
  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal or homicidal thoughts

How it Works
The 24-Hour Crisis Line is answered by crisis trained staff at the call center. They collect basic information and determine the seriousness of the call. The Crisis Response Team then contacts the caller to set up immediate community-based intervention or offer support and resources over the phone.

Community Education
Crisis services provide educational presentations and trainings on the various services we provide. Contact us today to arrange for one of our expert staff to come to your community group, school or organization.

New Beginnings Re-Entry Project

The process of leaving jail or prison isn’t easy. We help felons and ex-offenders identify their needs and connect them with the resources they need to start healing and rebuilding their lives.

The New Beginnings Re-Entry Project can help male and female inmates make a successful return to their families and communities as law-abiding, contributing citizens.

We offer:

  • Rule 25 assessments
  • Cultural assessments
  • Needs assessments
  • Intensive case management services

We connect clients to:

  • Substance use disorder treatment
  • Recovery support services
  • Mental health diagnostic assessment and counseling
  • Cultural activities and healing practices
  • Job skills training, family counseling and parenting skills
  • Medical or dental care
  • Housing programs

Because of programs like ours, Minnesota’s adult recidivism rates have remained remarkably stable. About 65% of offenders remain free of felony convictions for three years after their release.

Funding for this project is provided by the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division of the Minnesota Department of Human Services.

Sanford Housing Program

The Sanford Housing Program recognizes that housing is a basic right and that following a service plan will be easier when housing is take care of. The program focuses on giving the opportunity for tenants to learn skills to successfully manage a lease, develop a housing crisis and housing stabilization plan, and maintain permanent housing.

We focus on:

  • Access to housing
  • Choice of housing
  • Decent, safe and affordable housing
  • Flexible, voluntary and recovery-focused services
  • Housing integration
  • Separation of housing from services

We provide referrals to:

  • Adult Rehabilitative Mental Health Services
  • Case management
  • GED services
  • Individual, family or group therapy
  • Medical services
  • Medication management services
  • Peer support services
  • Substance use disorder services
  • Supported employment


Funding for this project is provided by the Minnesota Department of Human Services.