Drug abuseFree Online Training for Drug Abuse Counselors

Created and hosted by: Health Care Evaluation, Program Evaluation and Resource Center, VA Palo Alto Health Care System and Stanford University School of Medicine

This self-paced online course is designed to provide practicing substance abuse counselors with the knowledge, skills and abilities required to successfully implement Cognitive Behavioral Therapy strategies and techniques in their clinical practice. The course is divided into eight thirty-minute modules.

 Modules include:

  • Problem Solving (introduce and review the basic steps of problem solving; practice problem solving skills within session)
  • Risk Reduction (help clients assess their level of risk of HIV infection; get motivated to change; identify potential barriers that might prohibit change; set goals)
  • Decisions (describe seemingly irrelevant decisions and how the lead to high-risk situations; identify examples of seemingly irrelevant decisions; help your clients avoid risky decision making; assist your clients in identifying safe decisions)
  • Motivation (initiate an open-ended conversation with your clients to learn more about their goals and readiness for change; initiate a conversation about the mixed feelings they may have about quitting; assist clients in recognizing their thoughts about using; assist clients with coping skills for dealing with thoughts about drugs)
  • Coping Plans (assist clients in recognizing and avoiding high-risk situations; aid clients in creating a coping plan to use in high-risk situations)
  • Coping with Cravings (understand the client’s experience of craving; convey the nature of craving as a normal, time-limited experience; identify craving cues and triggers; teach the practice of craving and urge control techniques)
  • Refusal Skills (help clients assess the availability of their drug of choice and the steps to reduce it; explore strategies for breaking contacts with dealers and other suppliers; refuse offers of drugs; describe the difference between passive, aggressive and assertive responding)
  • Case Management (review and apply problem solving skills to problems that present a barrier to treatment; develop a specific support plan for addressing problems; monitor and support clients’ efforts to carry out the plan).

To access this FREE online course, please visit: http://www.nidatoolbox.org/.

A total of four (4) contact hours of continuing education (4 CEH) are available for the completion of NIDA Clinical Toolbox: Online Resources for Drug Abuse Counselors. UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs is an approved provider of continuing education for C.A.D.C.s I/II (CAADAC, 2N-00-445-1111); The Addiction Technology Transfer Center – National Office is an approved provider of continuing education for N.A.D.C.s I/II and M.A.C.s (NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, 64973). Continuing education certificates are mailed within 4-6 weeks of receipt of a completed CE evaluation.

For questions, please contact Kevin Lai at WenPin.Lai@va.gov.