About NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals
NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, represents the professional interests of more than 100,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals in the United States, Canada and abroad. NAADAC’s members are addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals, who specialize in addiction prevention, treatment, recovery support and education. An important part of the healthcare continuum, NAADAC members and its 47 state affiliates work to create healthier individuals, families and communities through prevention, intervention, quality treatment and recovery support.
“NAADAC is the premier global organization of addiction focused professionals who enhance the health and recovery of individuals, families and communities.” – NAADAC Vision Statement adopted 1998
Founded in 1974, as the National Association of Alcoholism Counselors and Trainers (NAACT), the organization’s primary objective was to develop a field of professional counselors with professional qualifications and backgrounds. The organization evolved and became the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) in 1982, uniting professionals who worked for positive outcomes in alcohol and drug services. NAADAC’s new name – NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals – was adopted in 2001 and reflects the increasing variety of addiction services professionals: counselors, administrators, social workers and others, who are active in counseling, prevention, intervention, treatment, education and research.
NAADAC’s members provide services in a variety of settings: private and public treatment centers, hospitals, private practice and community-based behavioral health agencies.
What is Addiction?
Science has shown that addiction is a brain disease that responds well to treatment. Research is providing a better understanding of how drugs, alcohol, tobacco and other chemical substances affect the brain. NAADAC supports continued research and is a powerful advocate for policies improving the understanding of – and financial support for – prevention and treatment of addiction.
Addiction is the number one public health issue in the United States today. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 22.1 million people aged 12 or older needed treatment for a substance use disorder in 2010. Of those 22.1 million people – almost 10% of the US population – only 2.6 million (11.2 percent of those who needed treatment) received the care that they needed.
How does NAADAC help?
NAADAC promotes excellence in care by advocating for the highest quality and most up-to-date, science-based services for clients, families and communities. NAADAC does this by providing education, clinical training and certification. Among the organization’s national certification programs are the National Certified Addiction Counselor, Nicotine Dependence Specialist credential and the Masters Addiction Counselor designations. NAADAC has credentialed more than 21,000 counselors, playing an important role in sustaining quality health services and protecting the well being of the public.
“NAADAC’s Mission is to lead, unify and empower addiction focused professionals to achieve excellence through education, advocacy, knowledge, standards of practice, ethics, professional development and research.” – NAADAC Mission Statement adopted 1998
NAADAC is working to make treatment by nationally certified counselors available to every person who needs it. Through government relations and advocacy, membership, a code of ethics and certification, NAADAC keeps you on the cutting edge of the addiction profession. NAADAC’s leaders and members are making a difference in the current discussion and perception of addiction issues. Join the nationwide network of NAADAC members who are working to make a positive difference.