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Follman Agency


Follman AgencyFollman Agency Review

Located in the small town of Burlington in Washington state’s Skagit County, Follman Agency offers long-term substance abuse treatment on an outpatient basis. The facility was founded in 1986 by Harriet Follman, a recovering alcoholic who wanted to share her knowledge and experience of recovery with her community. Clients at Follman Agency can also expect a mental health component to their care, as well as a variety of other specialized services. 

Treatment and Staff

Those in need of medical detox must complete this process before beginning treatment at Follman. After an initial evaluation, clients are enrolled in either an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) or standard outpatient track. The majority of those participating at Follman Agency attend treatment as the result of a court mandate.

The facility’s outpatient program is long-term and can last between one and two years. Those in the one-year program start with a traditional IOP consisting of three group therapy sessions a week for their first two months of treatment. This is followed by one group a week for the next six months and finally one group a month for the final four months. Clients typically attend one individual therapy session a month during their first phase of treatment, dropping down to two sessions in their second phase. At the end, all must submit to a final exit evaluation. The two year program follows a similar model, though each phase lasts longer.

Most participants elect the one-year program, although clients participating in deferred prosecution programs frequently follow the two-year schedule to meet court requirements. Those who require a less comprehensive program can also participate in the educational outpatient program, which is 26 total hours (24 spent in group therapy sessions and two one hour individual sessions).

The group and individual sessions that comprise Follman’s program are led by LADCs and consist primarily of CBT, with special sessions dedicated to anger management, relapse prevention and domestic abuse. While there is no specific family program in place, special sessions can be set aside for family members to attend as-needed.

One of the chief boons of Follman is its variety of programs for related behavioral health issues. These include anger management classes, gambling and sex addiction programs and even a program for those dealing with problematic internet use. Additionally, the Follman Agency has a separate outpatient substance abuse program for adolescents. There is no 12-step component to any of the above programs, though clients do receive information about local meetings.

Treatment does include a dual diagnosis component in the form of hour-long individual therapy sessions to address co-occurring disorders, though there is no psychiatrist on staff nor is medication management provided. 


Clients are welcome to step down from the IOP to traditional outpatient care to continue treatment for aftercare. The facility also offers an individualized relapse prevention program which can be pursued during this phase, as well as an ongoing art and poetry therapy workshop series.

Other services include ADIS (Alcohol and Drug Information School), an eight-hour information and prevention program held the first Saturday of the month, and interventions for loved ones in need of help.

Follman Agency also provides a domestic violence program which consists of 26 weekly group therapy sessions and two individual therapy sessions. Currently the program is solely for men, though women seeking counseling related to this issue can schedule individual sessions as well. Hypnotherapy is also available for chronic pain, anxiety, mood disorders and weight loss. The facility also sometimes hosts SMART Recovery and Cocaine Anonymous (CA) meetings.

In Summary

With comprehensive substance abuse services that include long-term care, Follman Agency is a facility that provides a variety of options. Though it may lack a medical component, the facility remains an affordable choice with a range of supplementary services. For those seeking outpatient care utilizing evidence-based methods as well as some alternative options, Follman Agency is a facility worth considering for a range of behavioral health needs.

Follman Agency Location

Follman Agency
910 S. Anacortes St
Burlington, WA 98233

Follman Agency Cost

$200 (30 days). Reach Follman Agency by phone at (360) 755-1125 or on their website. Find Follman Agency on Facebook

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Photo courtesy of Joe Mabel [GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via WikimediaCommons (resized and cropped)

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