Substance Abuse Counseling Certification
Addictions Counseling Certification
“Dedicated to Continued Learning, Growth, and Achievement in Substance Abuse Counseling Certification”
The objectives of the Substance Abuse Practitioner Certification Program are:
- Provide a high quality program of Certification in substance abuse counseling and addictions counseling for health care professionals practicing in the specialty of substance abuse and addictive behaviors at the practitioner level.
- Develop and support high standards of education and practice requirements for the attainment of substance abuse certification and addictions counseling at the level of a health care practitioner.
- Provide a mechanism for the ongoing involvement of a peer advisory board of qualified professionals to oversee program development and requirements for substance abuse counseling certification and addictions counseling certification.
- Provide society with a mechanism to ascertain the appropriate education, skills, knowledge and experience required by professionals who offer such services and have achieved substance abuse counseling certification at the practitioner level.
- Establish quality standards and requirements for the recertification of its credentialed members, attesting to ongoing education and skill attainment in the practice specialty of substance abuse counseling and addictive behaviors counseling.
- Provide a comprehensive program of approvals for continuing education, seminars, offerings, independent study, and other related educational activities, to ensure high quality standards are met and that such programs are of value to professionals practicing in the specialty of substance abuse counseling and addictions counseling.
Substance Abuse Practitioner Certification
Certified Substance Abuse Practitioner – requires attainment of the following certification criteria:
- Completion of an official, established education program to prepare health care professionals for the practice of substance abuse counseling and addictions counseling.
- Candidates for the Certification must successfully complete the continuing education program by The American Institute of Health Care Professionals, Inc. Completion of the required education courses qualifies the educational component necessary to apply for Substance Abuse Counseling Certification at the Practitioner level. This program consists of 215 contact hours of continuing education. See Full Program: Access here
- Requisite for all Applicants for Certification: in addition to meeting the educational criteria as provided above, applicants for Certification must meet one of the following prerequisites to enter this program:
- A psychologist.
- A licensed social worker.
- A licensed counselor.
- A registered nurse.
- A physician.
- A school counselor.
- Hold a graduate degree in educational counseling.
- A college degree in human services, psychology, or human behavior.
- Other college degrees may be applicable if they are in a related area or if the candidate can verify significant job experiences working with clients diagnosed with substance abuse/addictive behavior under the direct supervision of one who would qualify as a candidate above. Such cases are evaluated on an individual basis.
If you would like to find out if you meet the qualifications for this certification program. Please submit an Inquiry Form at the following link: Access Here.
Substance Abuse Counseling Certification at the Practitioner Level – Identification & Credentials
Those applicants who become certified by the AIHCP as Substance Abuse Practitioners may use the initials/credential CSAP., after their names: “Certified Substance Abuse Practitioner”
The Substance Abuse Counseling Certification Process:
Those applicants who become certified by the AIHCP in Substance Abuse Practitioners and complete the CE education curriculum for Substance Abuse Counseling, may use the initials/credential CSAP after their names. “Certified Substance Abuse Practitioner”
All certifications shall be for a period of 4 years from the date that the initial certification.
Certified members may receive re-certification at the expiration of their four year term by:
- Obtaining 60 or more hours of continuing education within the four year period of certification. Click here to view the Criteria for Re-Certification.
Substance Abuse Counseling Certificate -Practitioner Level
Those applicants who have successfully achieved certification, or recertification receive a large size official Certificate attesting to substance abuse counseling certification, as well as an official letter of notification. The certificate is suitable for framing and details the official professional certification title, initials that may be used, and time frames for certification. Those recertifying receive a new, updated certificate. Wallet size identification cards of certification are also presented.
- The certification fee for the Substance Abuse Practitioner Certification is $200.00, plus shipping and handling, for the four year term of certification. All Certification packets, which include the official certificate, wallet ID card, and other related documents are shipped with tracking. Payment in full is due at the time of application. If an applicant does not meet certification criteria, the application fee is refunded. A completed application must be submitted with full payment to be considered for certification. The application form is available Here.
- Application for re-certification is $200.00, plus shipping and handling, for the next four year period. This is a one time payment and is required in full at the time of application for re-certification. A completed application must accompany the payment.
- Major credit cards are accepted. Check and money orders are to be payable to: The American Institute of Healthcare Professionals.
Education Programs for Re-Certification as a Substance Abuse Counselor- Practitioner Level
Applicants may obtain education hours by completion of any type of formal program in specifically related to substance abuse counseling, addiction counseling/coaching, alcohol abuse, drug abuse, habit addiction, and other related topics. Such programs include:
- University/College Programs and Courses
- Continuing Education Courses
- Distance Learning Programs
- Self-Study Programs
- Courses offered by Professional Associations
The AIHCP reserves the right to approve all such courses for consideration toward substance abuse counseling re-certification. For any courses to be considered, applicants must submit copies of all certificates of completion or transcripts verifying completion. Applicants who are using their degrees to meet partial fulfillment of the education requirements for substance abuse counseling certification must have official transcripts submitted from their University or College, directly to the AIHCP.
Fellowship Program in Substance Abuse Counseling- Practitioner Level
The American Institute of Health Care Professionals, provides a “Fellowship Program” for its certified members in Substance Abuse Practitioner Program: Access Information
Click here to request more information.
Click here for the online application.
Click here for Policies.
Click here to contact AIHCP, INC.
What is Certification?
“A certification is a third-party attestation of an individual’s level of knowledge or proficiency in a certain industry or profession. They are granted by authorities in the field, such as professional societies and universities, or by private certificate-granting agencies. Most certifications are time-limited; some expire after a period of time (e.g., the lifetime of a product that required certification for use), while others can be renewed indefinitely as long as certain requirements are met. Renewal usually requires ongoing education to remain up-to-date on advancements in the field, evidenced by earning the specified number of continuing education credits (CECs), or continuing education units (CE’s), from approved professional development courses. “ 1
Certification is an official recognition from a “Professional Organization” that one has met all of the established standards as determined by that professional organization to be conferred the specific “certification” by that professional organization. Certifications are most frequently established and conferred by “professional organizations.” Certification is thus a validation that a professional has thus achieved a high standard of knowledge, learning and skills in a specific specialty area of practice. It attests to an achievement in professional practice that is beyond that achieved for licensure. It is also specialty practice specific, rather than generic in nature.
Certification is distinctly different from ‘licensing.” Licensure is conferred /granted by the Government. In most all cases, licensure is the responsibility of the State Government. Every state has its own government agencies that oversee and confer licensure to professionals, i.e. the state boards of nursing. Licensure is established by “laws” and then specific rules and regulations which conform to the tenets of the state’s laws. Licensure is granted and over-seen by state agencies. Certification, on the other hand, is NOT licensure and is not established by any “laws.” Licensing agencies generally do not “oversee” professional certifications, unless their specific laws mandate a certain professional certification, in order to practice. An example of this would be: for a registered nurse to receive and be conferred a license as a “Nurse Practitioner” most states require that the RN also have Certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. So, in order to be licensed as a nurse practitioner, the nurse must hold certification from one of those two professional organizations. The State Board of Nursing does not oversee the certification, but rather requires it for nurse practitioner license.
Why Achieve a Certification?
“Professional certification shows consumers and potential employers that you are committed to your profession and are well-trained. It gives them confidence in your abilities and knowledge. Certification makes you more valuable to employers, so you can expect to earn more than someone without certification. Certification also offers advancement opportunities.” 2 Other compelling reasons to consider a specialty practice certification include: Acquire advanced knowledge and skills in a sub-specialty health care practice: 1) Achieve national recognition for attainment of knowledge and skills by meeting established standards of professional advanced practice, 2). Enhance and expand your health care practice, 3). Increase your marketability, 4). Be viewed as a credentialed expert in your practice specialty, and 5). Become part of a professional group and network of recognized and certified health care specialists.
Report findings published on Nurse.com revealed the following regarding Nurses that held certifications: 1). Certified nurses make more money, 2). Certified nurses have respect and recognition, 3). Certified nurses have validated competence in their specialty area, 4). Certified nurses are more marketable and hireable, 5). Certified nurses perceive they have more power in their organizations, 6). Certified nurses have more professional opportunities, 7). Certified nurses have standing among their professional peers, and 8). Certified nurses are more confident. 3
While these study finds were specific to the nursing profession, we believe such benefits are applicable to all health care professionals who hold practice specialty certifications, especially related to recognition, opportunities in employment and validated competency in their practices.
A major hallmark of quality Certification programs is the mandate that Certified Members commit to continued learning in order to maintain their certifications. This is most generally achieved by requiring a recertification process in which certified member’s document continued learning in their practice specialty by way of continuing education. Certifying bodies will establish quality standards for the requirements for its certified members to achieve contact hours of continuing education credits in order to maintain their certification status by the organization or association. 1, 2
The American Institute of Health Care Professionals upholds this high quality standard for recertification of its members by an established program of recertification via mandatory continuing education as well as clinical practice hours over a four-year time frame. Certified members may recertify their status upon meeting the standards established for recertification of their practice specialties.
The AIHCP CE Model for Certification
The Model for Certification at the American Institute of Health Care Professionals is one based on a core curriculum of focused Continuing Education (CE) Courses. We feel strongly that the conferral of a professional certification requires the attainment of current knowledge and skills in a specialty practice and those who achieve certification should all have the same educational achievements and knowledge/skill base. We insure this by modeling our Certification programs on student’s achievements in a strong curriculum of continuing education in order to achieve our professional Certifications.
Why is continuing education important as a foundation of our model? There are several reasons why continuing education is important for health care professionals. First, it helps them keep up with the latest advances in their field. Second, it helps them maintain their skills and knowledge. Third, it helps them stay current with changes in the healthcare industry. Fourth, it helps them meet their licensure requirements. Finally, it helps them improve their patient care skills. With the rapid pace of change in the medical world, it is essential for health care professionals to keep abreast of new developments in order to provide the best possible care for their patients.
Another reason that we proposed continuing education courses as the foundation of our Certification model is that the benefits of continuing education courses are numerous. For one, they can keep you abreast of the latest developments in your field, which can be beneficial both professionally and personally. Additionally, they can help you network with other professionals in your field, which can lead to new opportunities. Finally, continuing education courses can simply be enjoyable and enriching, providing student candidates with a chance to learn new things and explore different topics.
Our model consists of several types of continuing education courses. Many of our CE courses are self-directed and self-paced with faculty-mentoring as required by the student candidates. Students utilize text books for the course and very often supplemental learning materials such as course handouts, articles and videos. Other types of courses we have include online video on demand lectures courses that provide for printable copies of the slides used in the videos.
All of our CE courses have examinations that must be successfully completed in order for students to receive credit for the courses and also receive a CE Course Certificate. Most all of the examinations on taken right online with a computerized system and are objective-type questions such as multiple choice and true/false questions. Students take the examination online and once completed receive immediate feedback of their examination score and the questions they may have missed including what the correct responses are to missed questions. Students must complete a comprehensive online course evaluation in order to receive their CE Course Certificate. Students may communicate with their course instructors regarding any questions they have about the examination both pre and post-test taking.
All of our CE Courses are approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing. We are an accredited provider of continuing education for the California Board of Registered Nursing. For many of our CE Courses we also have Board of Nursing Approval by the Florida Board of Nursing and the DC Board of Nursing. As well we are a Rule Approved Provider for CE by the following Boards of Nursing: Arkansas, Georgia, South Carolina, West Virginia, Kentucky and New Mexico. The AIHCP is also an Approved Provider for Continuing Education by the South Carolina Professional Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists and Psycho-Educational Specialists licensing board. Our core Grief Counseling Courses are also co-sponsored by AMEDCO which is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team and thus has American Psychological Association (APA) approval for these courses.
Upon successful completion of our CE Courses, our student candidates receive a full-sized Course CE Certificate with the full name of the course, date of completion, number of earned contact hours as well as all Board and Organizational approvals for the course. As our student candidates are generally health care professionals they have the added benefit of being able to use their earned CE Course contact hours for their State re-licensing CE requirements and many can use them for their CE requirements for recertifications in other professionals organizations.
Our foundational model of CE for Certification is also based on the importance to stay current in the health care field as changes in technology and treatments occur rapidly. As a health care professional, you need to be able to provide the best possible care for your patients. Staying current also allows you to keep up with the latest guidelines and standards of care. Additionally, new research is constantly emerging that can impact patient care.
In conclusion, our foundational model of continuing education courses for certification for health care professionals is important in order to keep up with the latest advancements in health care. They also help to refresh and update the skills of those who have been working in the field for many years. All of our courses can be taken online and are self-paced for the student candidate’s easy of self-paced learning and many employers offer financial assistance to employees who enter our programs.
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Professional_certification October 2018. Page 1.
- https://www.collegetransfer.net/AskCT/WhatisProfessionalCertification/ October 2018
- https://www.nurse.com/blog/2018/03/14/enjoy-the-perks-of-nurse-certification/ October 2018