Overview of Substance Abuse Counseling in New Mexico
Alcohol and substance abuse has been an ongoing public health issue in New Mexico for quite some time. The state consistently has the highest alcohol-related death rate in the U.S., and it saw a significant rise in the drug overdose death rate during the pandemic.
Although some experts feel that New Mexico should devote more energy to prevention and intervention efforts, the state has succeeded in providing more funding for substance use treatment. Plans are underway to continue expanding the number of treatment facilities, as well as the number of licensed addiction counselors available to provide substance use counseling in New Mexico.
If you're looking for an online bachelor's degree in counseling, you'll find plenty of options on our lists of the best online substance abuse counseling programs, the most affordable online substance abuse counseling programs, and the best online counseling programs.
FAQs About Substance Use Counseling Degrees in New Mexico
What Can You Do With a Substance Use Counselor Degree in New Mexico?
If your career goals involve serving people in your community who suffer from substance use disorders, your substance abuse counseling degree qualifies you for several different job opportunities in New Mexico.
If you'd prefer a nonclinical role, you could go to work in a government agency or nonprofit organization involved in preventing and treating substance misuse. For example, as a community health worker or a health education specialist, you could spend your time overseeing educational and treatment programs or fundraising for your organization.
However, you may prefer to work directly with people, offering substance abuse counseling in New Mexico. You will need a bachelor's degree or a master's degree in addiction counseling or a similar field to become a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor (LADAC) or a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC).
How Much Do Addiction Counselors Make in New Mexico?
Although a mean salary specifically for substance use counselors in this state is not available, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has confirmed a mean annual wage of $62.610 for all substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health therapists in New Mexico. The number of job openings for these professionals in New Mexico should increase by 18.7% between 2020 and 2030, according to ProjectionsCentral.
How Do I Become a Substance Use Counselor in New Mexico?
There are several different ways to become an alcohol and drug counselor in the state of New Mexico. You can work with either the New Mexico Counseling and Therapy Practice Board or the New Mexico Credentialing Board Behavioral Health Professionals.
With the New Mexico Counseling and Therapy Practice Board, you will probably begin at the Licensed Substance Abuse Associate (LSAA) level, which is designed for aspiring counselors who are still in training. Once you've completed additional education and gained more work experience, you can apply for the Licensed Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor (LADAC) certification.
Professionals with LSAA certification are limited to providing individual and group substance abuse counseling under the supervision of a qualified counselor. To qualify for an LSAA credential, you need at least an associate degree in counseling or a related field, as well as 90 hours, or six courses, of college-level education in alcohol and drug counseling. You do not need to pass an exam to obtain this level of substance abuse counseling certification.
To provide all functions of addiction counseling independently, you'll need to meet the Counseling and Therapy Practice Board requirements for becoming a LADAC. These include an associate degree or higher in counseling or a related field, as well as 276 hours, or about 18 courses, of college-level education in counseling and addiction studies. You'll also need 1,000-3,000 hours of clinical work experience, of which 50-200 hours must be supervised. The exact number of hours varies depending on the amount of college education you've completed. You must then pass the NCAC I Exam administered by the Association for Addiction Professionals (NAADAC).
LADACs are required to renew their license every year. To qualify, you need to complete 40 hours of continuing education.
If you decide to work with the New Mexico Credentialing Board, which is a member of the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC), you can apply for certification as a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC). Requirements for this credential include the completion of 270 hours, or 18 courses, of college-level addiction counseling training, 2,000-6,000 hours of clinical work experience, 300 hours of supervised practice, and a passing score on the IC&RC ADC Exam.
CADCs must recertify every two years after completing 40 hours of continuing education.
Many LADAC and CADC applicants earn a bachelor's degree and possibly a master's degree to fulfill the required number of college courses. If you have not yet earned a master's degree, you may want to consider the options on our lists of the best online substance abuse counseling master's degrees and the most affordable online substance abuse counseling master's degrees. All of the schools listed on our website have earned institutional accreditation.
Does New Mexico Have Reciprocity for Substance Use Counselors?
Either credentialing board may grant reciprocity to some addiction professionals who want to provide in-person, telephone, and online substance abuse counseling in New Mexico. Licensed counselors who've met requirements similar to those in New Mexico may qualify for LADAC licensure, and IC&RC-certified counselors may be able to transfer their current credential to CADC certification, as long as they plan to live and work in New Mexico at least 51% of the time.