Certificate in Opioid Treatment Specialist

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The number of opioid-related deaths in the United States continues to climb. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioids were involved in 42,249 deaths in 2016. Of all of the opioid-related deaths, 40 percent were from prescription opioids. The problem hasn't missed Pennsylvania as the commonwealth was fourth in the nation in drug overdose deaths in 2016.

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Clarion University has responded to the growing opioid epidemic by creating an online Opioid Treatment Specialist Certificate.

Faculty experts in addictions, rehabilitation, social work, counseling, psychology and nursing contributed to the design of the certificate, which provides advanced information on opioid abuse and its prevention, education and treatment.

Program participants will:

  • Learn the history of opioid abuse and dependence, including the current crisis
  • Gain a working knowledge of commonly abused (legal and illegal) opioids and drugs
  • Become familiar with diagnosis and detox
  • Assess client biopsychosocial needs and assets for developing comprehensive treatment plans for opioids and other chemical dependencies
  • Develop a working knowledge of treatment and recovery, including medication-assisted therapies, traditional therapies, peer self-help groups, and newer therapeutic approaches, i.e., ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy)
  • Learn to empower clients/patients
  • Plan and evaluate prevention and treatment programs for opioids and other chemical dependency
  • Develop skills for individual advocacy
  • Study and perform advocacy skills for larger systems improvement, i.e., public policy and legislation

Anyone may pursue the 12-credit certificate. There are no prerequisites. It would be most beneficial to professionals who want to strengthen their credentials and current students who want to graduate with stronger job prospects.

The certificate is designed to be offered across two consecutive semesters, with all four courses in seven week formats. The certificate can be earned in as little as one academic year, beginning in either the fall or spring semester.

The courses and sequence:

  • REHB 406 Opioid Abuse
  • NURS 475 Comprehensive Treatment of Chemical Dependency
  • REHB 410 Prevention, Education and Treatment of Substance Abuse
  • REHB 421 Advocacy and Public Policy in Addictions and Recovery

The certificate is beneficial for:

  • Drug counselors
  • Prevention specialists
  • Case managers
  • Nurses
  • EMTs
  • Emergency room personnel
  • Social workers
  • HIV/AIDS treatment specialists
  • School counselors
  • Probation and parole staff
  • Law enforcement
  • Children and family therapists
  • Assessment specialists and other human services professionals who work with impacted clients and families

Do you have financial Need?

Opioid Treatment Specialist Certificate SCHOLARSHIP Application

Workers / trainees from Clarion, Crawford, Erie, Forest, Lawrence, Mercer, Venango and Warren Counties may be eligible for tuition assistance. Funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Northwest Pennsylvania AIDS Alliance, and Clarion University is specifically intended to provide tuition assistance for certificate seeking applicants from these counties. Please submit the Opioid Treatment Specialist Certificate Scholarship Application for consideration. Available for students applying to the Fall 2018/Spring 2019 semesters. Any questions can be directed to David McFarland, Director of Scholarships at dmcfarland@clarion.edu

Estimated Costs

Per course cost (three credits) = $1,149.30 Pennsylvania resident
Per course cost (three credits) = $1,299.30 Non-Pennsylvania resident
Complete program total (four courses) cost = $4,597.20 Pennsylvania resident
Complete program total (four courses) cost = $5,197.20 Non-Pennsylvania resident

Application Process

Apply today for the Opioid Certificate program. Once you've submitted your application, you'll receive an email with your student login information. You will be enrolled automatically in REHB 406 Opioid Abuse and the NURS 475: Comprehensive Treatment of Chemical Dependency courses and will be notified when scheduling is complete.

For more information

For more information, call Dr. Ray Feroz at 814 393 2052, Department of Human Services, Rehabilitation, Health and Sport Sciences at 814 393 2325, or Admissions at 800 672 7171, ext. 1. You may also contact Mark Lepore at 814 393 2474 or Nancy Falvo  at 814 393 1251.

If you have questions about this certificate, read our FAQs page.

Last Updated 9/10/18