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InterCoast College: How to Become an Effective Substance Abuse Counselor

Do you want to pursue a career in substance abuse counseling? Substance abuse counselors are valuable in transforming people’s lives. Are you ready to accept the challenge? There are real challenges associated with this job, but being able to successfully change a person and permanently remove him from the addiction is very fulfilling. The job of a substance abuse counselor is to help alcoholics and addicts with crisis or long-term management issues to seek medical intervention and prevent them return to the bad habit. A substance abuse counselor helps in finding peer support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA), employment opportunities, housing, and medical help.

What are the requirements to become a licensed substance abuse counselor? A person who wants to become a substance abuse counselor, must enroll in a training program or a higher education, and pass the licensure examination in the state he wishes to practice. A substance abuse counselor with a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree won’t need any training anymore. The training for those who only have high school diploma is usually conducted on-the-job training or actual observation of a substance abuse counselor counseling a client. The various subjects that are covered in a drug and alcoholism certification program includes patient privacy and confidentiality, crisis management, communication, and administrative work. Licensing would require a master’s degree and a clinical experience of 2,000-3,000 working hours under a licensed substance abuse counselor’s supervision.

Are there any CPE requirements for a substance abuse counselor to maintain his license? What are the benefits of taking CPE courses for substance abuse counselors? Substance abuse counselors are also required to meet a number of CPE hours a year to maintain a license to ensure that they are abreast with the latest knowledge and skills to perform their profession. The relevant topics for CPE courses include management of client depression, juvenile substance abuse, proper response and management to suicidal patients, ethics, and addiction treatment for patients with personality disorders.

What are the duties and responsibilities of a substance abuse counselor? A substance abuse counselor is expected to thoroughly assess and interview a client, develops effective treatment plans, work in collaboration with other professionals such as the client’s psychiatrist, and to find the best course of treatment available. If you want to become substance abuse counselor, find out more by checking InterCoast College offered courses.

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