Addiction professionals shall abide by the NAADAC Code of Ethics. Addiction professionals shall read, understand and follow the NAADAC Code of Ethics and shall adhere to applicable Federal and state laws and regulations.
Addiction professionals shall conduct themselves with integrity. Providers shall maintain integrity in their professional and personal relationships and activities. Providers shall communicate honestly, accurately, and appropriately to clients, peers, and the public, regardless of the communication medium used.
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, pregnancy, 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 to the appropriate regulatory bodies, if requested.
- Fail to disclose conviction of any misdemeanor related to their qualifications or functions as an Addiction Professional, to the appropriate regulatory bodies, if requested.
- 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, or having their certification or license suspended or revoked.
- 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 shall 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 conferred upon them by accredited institutions. Providers shall claim and present only those specialized certifications received from a qualified certifying body. Providers shall accurately represent the accreditation status of a specific institution of higher learning or certifying body.
Addiction Professionals shall claim and promote only those licenses and certifications that are current and in good standing.
Addiction Professionals and providers shall correct all references to their credentials and affiliations that are false, deceptive, or misleading. Providers shall advocate for accuracy in statements made by self or others about the addiction profession.
Addiction professionals shall accurately represent professional qualifications, education, experience, memberships, affiliations or recovery history. Providers shall accept employment only on the basis of existing competencies or explicit intent to acquire the necessary competence.
Addiction professionals shall only provide services within their scope of practice and competency, and shall only 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 only practice within the boundaries of their competence. Competence shall be established through education, training, skills, and supervised experience, state and national professional credentials and certifications, and relevant professional experience.
Addiction professionals shall seek and develop proficiency through relevant education, training, and supervised experience prior to independently delivering specialty services. Providers shall obtain supervised experience and consultation to ensure the validity of their work and shall protect clients from harm when developing skills in new specialty areas.
Addiction professionals shall recognize that advanced educational achievement shall be necessary to provide the level of service clients deserve. Providers shall accept and acknowledge the need for formal and specialized education as a vital component of professional development, competency, and integrity.
Addiction professionals shall 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 serve, under supervision. Providers shall remain informed regarding best practices for working with diverse populations.
Addiction professionals shall continuously self-monitor 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 such services are requested.
Addiction professionals shall discuss with clients and document the potential risks, benefits and ethical concerns prior to using developing or innovative techniques, procedures, or modalities with a client. Providers shall minimize any potential risks or harm when using developing and/or innovative techniques, procedures, or modalities, and document the steps taken to minimize risks. Providers shall obtain and document supervision and/or consultation regarding potential risks to clients prior to presenting innovative treatment options.
Addiction professionals shall deliver multiculturally-sensitive counseling and other services by gaining knowledge specific to multiculturalism, increasing awareness of the diverse cultural identifications of clients, developing cultural humility, displaying an attitude favorable to differences, and increasing skills pertinent to being culturally-sensitive.
Addiction professionals shall work to educate medical professionals about substance use disorders, the need for collaboration between primary care and SUD providers, and the need to limit the use of mood-altering chemicals for clients in SUD treatment and/or recovery.
Addiction professionals shall recognize the need for the use of mood-altering chemicals in limited medical situations, and shall 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 shall be 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 obtain and document supervision and/or consultation to address their concerns consistent with client well-being.
Addiction professionals shall be 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 promote the practice of addiction counseling by qualified persons and shall only employ individuals who have the appropriate and requisite education, training, licensure and/or certification, and supervised experience.
Addiction professionals shall be aware of society’s prejudice and stigma towards people with substance use disorders, and shall willingly engage in the legislative process, educational institutions, and public forums to educate people about addictive disorders, and shall advocate for opportunities and choices for clients. Providers shall advocate for their clients as needed.
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 ensure 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, and shall work 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, without distortion or misrepresentation to the public and others.
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, substance use disorders, the legislative process, or any person involved in the legislative process. The term “public comments” shall include, but shall not be limited to any and all forms of oral, written, and electronic communication.
Addiction professionals shall 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 physical, psychological, social, and emotional impairment. Providers, with the guidance of supervision or consultation, shall obtain 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 as needed to peers, coworkers, and supervisors who are demonstrating professional impairment, and shall 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, nor recruit colleagues or supervisors, from their places of employment or professional affiliations to their private practice without prior documented authorization. Providers shall offer multiple referral options to clients when referrals are necessary. Providers shall obtain supervision or consultation to address any potential or real conflicts of interest, and shall document the recommendations.
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 or agencies shall develop policies regarding continuation of services upon the incapacitation, termination, retirement or death of the provider.
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 set forth by NAADAC prior to promoting their active provider status.
Addiction professionals shall ensure that promotions and advertisements concerning 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. Providers shall not use their counseling, teaching, training or supervisory relationships to deceptively promote their products or training events.
Addiction professionals who solicit testimonials from former clients or any other persons shall discuss with clients the implications of, and potential concerns, regarding testimonials, prior to obtaining written permission for the use of specific testimonials.
Addiction professionals shall accurately, honestly and objectively report professional activities and judgments to appropriate third parties, which shall include, but shall not be limited to courts, probation/parole, insurance organizations and providers, recipients of evaluation reports, referral sources, professional organizations, regulatory agencies, regulatory boards, and ethics committees.
Addiction professionals, when offering advice or comments using any platform, which shall include, but shall not limited to presentations and lectures, demonstrations, printed articles, mailed materials, television or radio programs, video or audio recordings, technology-based applications, or other media shall 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.
Addiction professionals who are required by law, institutional policy, or extraordinary circumstances to serve in more than one role in judicial or administrative proceedings shall clarify role expectations and the parameters of confidentiality with all parties involved.
Addiction professionals who become aware of inappropriate, illegal, discriminatory, and/or unethical policies, procedures and practices at their agency, organization, or practice shall alert their employers. When there is potential for harm to clients or limitations on the effectiveness of services, 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 who act in the role of supervisor or consultant, shall ensure that they have appropriate resources and competencies prior to providing supervisory or consultation services. Supervisors or consultants shall provide appropriate referrals to resources when requested or needed.
Addiction professionals who offer supervisory or consultation services shall review with the consultee/supervisee, both verbally and in writing, the rights and responsibilities of both the supervisor/consultant and supervisee/consultee. Providers shall inform all parties involved about the purpose, costs, risks and benefits, and the limits of confidentiality of the services to be provided.
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.