Overview of Online Substance Use Counseling in Hawaii
Even in the beautiful state of Hawaii, residents are struggling with substance misuse and chemical dependency. A 2022 report published by the Hawaii State Department of Health's Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division (ADAD) notes that heroin and synthetics, especially fentanyl, are the top causes of fatal drug poisonings. The report also states that methamphetamine and cocaine use and dependence were higher in Hawaii than the national average.
In light of these issues, the ADAD has developed a state plan that encompasses four broad priorities. These include shifting funding toward drug-related programs, improving collaboration among service providers, and collecting more data that will provide greater insight into the problems at hand.
The state's fourth priority is to increase the recruitment and retention of qualified substance use workers. Professionals who are licensed to provide substance use counseling in Hawaii may find more job opportunities through this plan in the future.
Looking for an accredited online bachelor's program? Explore our lists of the best online substance abuse counseling degrees, the most affordable online substance abuse counseling degrees, and the best online counseling degrees.
FAQs About Substance Use Counseling Degrees in Hawaii
What Can You Do With a Substance Use Counselor Degree in Hawaii?
Hawaii residents who have earned an in-person or online substance abuse counseling degree or something similar can pursue several different career opportunities.
One of the most common occupations is that of Certified Substance Abuse Counselor (CSAC). Although a specific degree is not one of the requirements for becoming a CSAC, earning a bachelor's or master's degree in substance abuse counseling will definitely help you meet the state's certification qualifications. Once you've been certified as a CSAC, you'll be allowed to provide face-to-face and online substance abuse counseling services throughout the state.
Even if you don't want to become a counselor, there are many other ways to use your degree to assist people who are suffering from substance use disorder. For example, you could become a health education specialist or community health worker working with state agencies and nonprofit organizations to provide treatment and promote wellness.
How Do I Become a Substance Use Counselor in Hawaii?
Before you submit your application to become a substance use counselor in Hawaii, you'll want to thoroughly study the state's substance abuse counseling certification system. The Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division provides detailed information on each level of certification and the corresponding application and renewal procedures.
Most chemical dependency professionals in Hawaii are Certified Substance Abuse Counselors (CSACs). Regardless of whether you've completed some college coursework, a bachelor's degree in substance abuse counseling or behavioral health, or a master's degree in counseling or behavioral health, you must have 300 hours of formal education focused on substance use disorder to become a CSAC. Your level of education will dictate how many hours of additional supervised work experience and other training you need to accumulate before applying.
The ADAD accepts both traditional and online substance abuse counseling degrees as long as they have been earned at institutionally accredited schools. If you would like to continue your education with an online degree, you'll find many options on our lists of substance abuse counseling degrees, all of which are institutionally accredited. For bachelor's degrees, review the best online substance abuse counseling bachelor's degrees and the most affordable online substance abuse counseling bachelor's degrees. For master's degrees, consider the best online substance abuse counseling master's degrees and the most affordable online substance abuse counseling master's degrees.
Additionally, all CSAC applicants must pass the Alcohol and Drug Counselor and Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor Exam offered by the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC).
CSACs who have been working in this profession for several years may apply for a higher level of certification, called the Certified Clinical Supervisor (CCS). Applicants must hold a master's degree in substance use counseling or a related field, have 10,000 documented hours of work experience, and pass the IC&RC's International Written Clinical Supervisor Examination.
Besides the CSAC and CCS classifications, Hawaii offers one other type of certification. The Certified Prevention Specialist (CPS) is for professionals who specialize in providing prevention interventions. Applicants must have a high school diploma or the equivalent, 120 hours of prevention-specific education, and 2,000 hours of prevention work experience. CPS applicants must also pass the International Written Prevention Specialist Exam sponsored by the IC&RC.
Does Hawaii Have Reciprocity for Substance Use Counselors?
Yes, because Hawaii is a member of the IC&RC, substance use counselors who have been certified by the IC&RC in other states may be able to obtain licensure in Hawaii without any additional training. If you are planning to relocate to Hawaii and would like to transfer your credentials, contact your current credentialing board and request a reciprocity application.
How Much Does a Substance Use Counselor Make in Hawaii?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, substance use, behavioral disorder, and mental health therapists in Hawaii earn a mean annual wage of $66,610. There are currently about 850 professionals providing counseling for substance abuse and other behavioral and mental issues. However, the BLS expects job opportunities in this state to increase by 25% through the rest of this decade.