Addiction Professionals shall abide by the NAADAC Code of Ethics. Addiction Professionals have a responsibility to read, understand and follow the NAADAC Code of Ethics and adhere to applicable laws and regulations.
Addiction Professionals shall conduct themselves with integrity. Providers aspire to maintain integrity in their professional and personal relationships and activities. Regardless of medium, Providers shall communicate to clients, peers, and the public honestly, accurately, and appropriately.
Addiction Professionals shall not engage in, endorse or condone discrimination against prospective or current clients and their families, students, employees, volunteers, supervisees, or research participants based on their race, ethnicity, age, disability, religion, spirituality, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital or partnership status, language preference, socioeconomic status, immigration status, active duty or veteran status, or any other basis.
Addiction Professionals shall provide services that are nondiscriminatory and nonjudgmental. Providers shall not exploit others in their professional relationships. Providers shall maintain appropriate professional and personal boundaries.
Addiction Professionals shall not participate in, condone, or be associated with any form of dishonesty, fraud, or deceit.
Addiction Professionals shall not engage in any criminal activity. Addiction Professionals and Service Providers shall be in violation of this Code and subject to appropriate sanctions, up to and including permanent revocation of their NAADAC membership and NCC AP certification, if they:
- Fail to disclose conviction of any felony.
- Fail to disclose conviction of any misdemeanor related to their qualifications or functions as an Addiction Professional;
- Engage in conduct which could lead to conviction of a felony or misdemeanor related to their qualifications or functions as an Addiction Professional;
- Are expelled from or disciplined by other professional organizations;
- Have their licenses or certificates suspended or revoked, or are otherwise disciplined by regulatory bodies;
- Continue to practice addiction counseling while impaired to do so due to physical or mental causes;
- Continue to practice addiction counseling while impaired abuse of alcohol or other drugs;
- Continue to identify themselves as a certified or licensed addiction professional after being denied certification or licensure, or allowing their certification or license to lapse
- Fail to cooperate with the NAADAC or NCC AP Ethics Committees at any point from the inception of an ethics complaint through the completion of all procedures regarding that complaint.
Addiction Professionals shall not engage in or condone any form of harassment, including sexual harassment.
Addiction Professionals intentionally differentiate between current, active memberships and former or inactive memberships with NAADAC and other professional associations.
Addiction Professionals shall claim and present only those educational degrees and specialized certifications that they have earned from the appropriate institutions or organizations. Providers shall not imply Master’s level competence until their Master’s degree is awarded. Providers shall not imply doctoral-level competence until their doctoral title or degree is awarded. The accreditations of a specific institution of higher learning or degree program shall be accurately represented.
Addiction Professionals shall claim and promote only those licenses and certifications that are current and in good standing.
Addiction Professionals shall ensure that their credentials and affiliations are identified accurately. Providers shall correct all references to their credentials and affiliations that are false, deceptive, or misleading. Addiction Professionals shall advocate for accuracy in statements made by self or others about the addiction profession.
Addiction Professionals shall not misrepresent professional qualifications, education, experience, memberships or affiliations. Providers shall accept employment on the basis of existing competencies or explicit intent to acquire the necessary competence.
Addiction Professionals shall provide services within their scope of practice and competency, and shall offer services that are science-based, evidence-based, and outcome-driven. Providers shall engage in counseling practices that are grounded in rigorous research methodologies. Providers shall maintain adequate knowledge of and adhere to applicable professional standards of practice.
Addiction Professionals shall practice within the boundaries of their competence. Competence shall be established through education, training, skills, and super vised experience, state and national professional credentials and certifications, and relevant professional experience.
Addiction Professionals shall seek and develop proficiency through relevant education, training, skills, and supervised experience prior to independently delivering specialty services. Providers engage in supervised experience and seek consultation to ensure the validity of their work and protect clients from harm when developing skills in new specialty areas.
Addiction Professionals recognize that the highest levels of educational achievement are necessary to provide the level of service clients deserve. Providers embrace the need for formal and specialized education as a vital component of professional development, competency, and integrity. Providers pursue knowledge of new developments within the addiction and behavioral health professions and increase competency through formal education, training, and supervised experience.
Addiction Professionals shall pursue and engage in continuing education and professional development opportunities in order to maintain and enhance knowledge of research-based scientific developments within the profession. Providers shall learn and utilize new procedures relevant to the clients they are working with. Providers shall remain informed regarding best practices for working with diverse populations.
Addiction Professionals are continuously self-monitoring in order to meet their professional obligations. Providers shall engage in self-care activities that promote and maintain their physical, psychological, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
Addiction Professionals shall use techniques, procedures, and modalities that have a scientific and empirical foundation. Providers shall utilize counseling techniques and procedures that are grounded in theory, evidence-based, outcome-driven and/or a research-supported promising practice. Providers shall not use techniques, procedures, or modalities that have substantial evidence suggesting harm, even when these services are requested.
Addiction Professionals shall discuss and document potential risks, benefits and ethical concerns prior to using developing or innovative techniques, procedures, or modalities with a client. Providers shall minimize and document any potential risks or harm when using developing and/or innovative techniques, procedures, or modalities. Provider shall seek and document supervision and/or consultation prior to presenting treatment options and risks to a client.
Addiction Professionals shall develop multicultural counseling competency by gaining knowledge specific to multiculturalism, increasing awareness of cultural identifications of clients, evolving cultural humility, displaying a disposition favorable to difference, and increasing skills pertinent to being a culturally-sensitive Provider.
Addiction Professionals shall work to educate medical professionals about substance use disorders, the need for primary treatment of these disorders, and the need to limit the use of mood altering chemicals for persons in recovery.
Addiction Professionals shall recognize the need for the use of mood altering chemicals in limited medical situations, and will work to educate medical professionals to limit, monitor, and closely supervise the administration of such chemicals when their use is necessary.
Addiction Professionals shall collaborate with other health care professionals in providing a supportive environment for any client who receives prescribed medication.
Collaborative multidisciplinary care teams are focused on increasing the client’s functionality and wellness. Addiction Professionals who are members of multidisciplinary care teams shall work with team members to clarify professional and ethical obligations of the team as a whole and its individual members. If ethical concerns develop as a result of a team decision, Providers shall attempt to resolve the concern within the team first. If resolution cannot be reached within the team, Providers shall pursue and document supervision and/or consultation to address their concerns consistent with client well-being.
Addiction Professionals are aware of the need for collegiality and cooperation in the helping professions. Providers shall act in good faith towards colleagues and other professionals, and shall treat colleagues and other professionals with respect, courtesy, honesty, and fairness.
Addiction Professionals shall develop respectful and collaborative relationships with other professionals who are working with a specific client. Providers shall not offer professional services to a client who is in counseling with another professional, except with the knowledge and documented approval of the other professionals or following termination of services with the other professionals.
Addiction professionals shall work to prevent the practice of addictions counseling by unqualified and unauthorized persons, and shall not employ individuals who do not have appropriate and requisite education, training, licensure and/or certification in addictions.
Providers shall be advocates for their clients in those settings where the client is unable to advocate for themselves.
Addiction Professionals are aware of society’s prejudice and stigma towards people with substance use disorders, and willingly engage in the legislative process, educational institutions, and public forums to educate people about addictive disorders and advocate for opportunities and choices for our clients.
Addiction Professionals shall advocate for changes in public policy and legislation to improve opportunities and choices for all persons whose lives are impaired by substance use disorders.
Addiction Professionals shall inform the public of the impact of substance use disorders through active participation in civic affairs and community organizations. Providers shall act to guarantee that all persons, especially the disadvantaged, have access to the opportunities, resources, and services required to treat and manage their disorders. Providers shall educate the public about substance use disorders, while working to dispel negative myths, stereotypes, and misconceptions about substance use disorders and the people who have them.
Addiction Professionals shall respect the limits of present knowledge in public statements concerning addictions treatment, and shall report that knowledge accurately and without distortion or misrepresentation to the public and to other professionals and organizations.
Addiction Professionals shall distinguish clearly between statements made and actions taken as a private individual and statements made and actions taken as a representative of an agency, group, organization, or the addiction profession.
Addiction Professionals shall make no public comments disparaging NAADAC or the addictions profession. The term “public comments” shall include, but is not limited to, any and all forms of oral, written, and electronic communication which may be accessible to anyone who is or is not a NAADAC member.
Addiction Professionals shall make no public comments disparaging persons who have substance use disorders. The term “public comments” shall include, but is not limited to, all forms of oral, written, and electronic communication which may be accessible to anyone who is not a NAADAC member.
Addiction Professionals shall make no public comments disparaging the legislative process, or any person involved in the legislative process. The term “public comments” shall include, but is not limited to, all forms of oral, written, and electronic communication which may be accessible to anyone who is not a NAADAC member.
Addiction Professionals actively participate in local, state and national associations that promote professional development.
Addiction Professionals shall support the formulation, development, enactment, and implementation of public policy and legislation concerning the addiction profession and our clients.
Addiction Professionals shall work for parity in insurance coverage for substance use disorders as primary medical disorders.
Addiction Professionals shall recognize the effect of impairment on professional performance and shall seek appropriate professional assistance for any personal problems or conflicts that may impair work performance or clinical judgment. Providers shall continuously monitor themselves for signs of impairment physically, psychologically, socially, and emotionally. Providers, with the guidance of supervision or consultation, shall seek appropriate assistance in the event they are professionally impaired. Providers shall abide by statutory mandates specific to professional impairment when addressing one’s own impairment.
Addiction Professionals shall offer and provide assistance and consultation as needed to peers, coworkers, and supervisors who are demonstrating professional impairment, and intervene to prevent harm to clients. Providers shall abide by statutory mandates specific to reporting the professional impairment of peers, coworkers, and supervisors.
Addiction Professionals shall not refer clients, or recruit colleagues or supervisors, from their places of employment or professional affiliation to their private practice without prior documented authorization. Providers shall offer multiple referral options to clients when referrals are necessary. Providers will seek supervision or consultation to address any potential or real conflicts of interest.
Addiction Professionals shall create a written plan, policy or Professional Will for addressing situations involving the Provider’s incapacitation, termination of practice, retirement, or death.
Addiction Professionals and Organizations offering education, trainings, seminars, and workshops shall accurately and honestly represent their NAADAC-approved education provider status. Providers and organizations shall meet all requirements put forth by NAADAC if they intend to promote active provider status.
Addiction Professionals shall ensure that promotions and advertisements concerning their workshops, trainings, seminars, and products that they have developed for use in the delivery of services are accurate and provide ample information so consumers can make informed choices. Addiction Professionals shall not use their counseling, teaching, training or supervisory relationships to deceptively or unduly promote their products or training events.
Addiction Professionals shall be thoughtful when they solicit testimonials from former clients or any other persons. Providers shall discuss with clients the implications of and potential concerns, regarding testimonials, prior to obtaining written permission for the use of specific testimonials. Providers shall seek consultation or supervision prior to seeking a testimonial.
Addiction Professionals shall take care to accurately, honestly and objectively report professional activities and judgments to appropriate third parties (i.e., courts, probation/parole, healthcare insurance organizations and providers, recipients of evaluation reports, referral sources, professional organizations, regulatory agencies, regulatory boards, ethics committees, etc.).
Addiction Professionals shall take resonable precautions, when offering advice or comments (using any platform including presentations and lectures, demonstrations, printed articles, mailed materials, television or radio programs, video or audio recordings, technology-based applications, or other media), to ensure that their statements are based on academic, research, and evidence-based, outcome-driven literature and practice. The advice or comments shall be consistent with the NAADAC Code of Ethics.
When Addiction Professionals are required by law, institutional policy, or extraordinary circumstances to serve in more than one role in judicial or administrative proceedings, they shall clarify role expectations and the parameters of confidentiality with their colleagues.
When Addiction Professionals become aware of inappropriate, illegal, discriminatory, and/or unethical policies, procedures and practices at their agency, organization, or practice, they shall alert their employers. When there is the potential for harm to clients or limitations on the effectiveness of services provided, Providers shall seek supervision and/or consultation to determine appropriate next steps and further action. Providers and Supervisors shall not harass or terminate an employee or colleague who has acted in a responsible and ethical manner to expose inappropriate employer employee policies, procedures and/ or practices.
Addiction Professionals, acting in the role of Supervisor or Consultant, shall take reasonable steps to ensure that they have appropriate resources and competencies when providing supervisory or consultation services. Supervisors or consultants shall provide appropriate referrals to resources when requested or needed.
Addiction Professionals offering supervisory or consultation services shall have an obligation to review with the consultee/supervisee, in writing and verbally, the rights and responsibilities of both the Supervisory/Consultant and supervisee/consultee. Providers shall inform all parties involved about the purpose of the services to be provided, costs, risks and benefits, and the limits of confidentiality.
Addiction Professionals shall give appropriate credit to the authors or creators of all materials used in their course of their work. Providers shall not plagiarize another person’s work.