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Substance Abuse Social Worker

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What is a Substance Abuse Social Worker?

Occupation Description Assess and treat individuals with mental, emotional, or substance abuse problems, including abuse of alcohol, tobacco, and/or other drugs. Activities may include individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, case management, client advocacy, prevention, and education.

What Do Substance Abuse Social Workers Do On a Daily Basis?

  • Plan or conduct programs to prevent substance abuse, combat social problems, or improve health or counseling services in community.
  • Counsel clients in individual or group sessions to assist them in dealing with substance abuse, mental or physical illness, poverty, unemployment, or physical abuse.
  • Counsel or aid family members to assist them in understanding, dealing with, or supporting the client or patient.
  • Develop or advise on social policy or assist in community development.
  • Assist clients in adhering to treatment plans, such as setting up appointments, arranging for transportation to appointments, or providing support.
  • Supervise or direct other workers who provide services to clients or patients.

Skills Needed to be a Substance Abuse Social Worker

These are the skills Substance Abuse Social Workers say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

  • Case Therapist
  • Probation Agent
  • Counselor
  • Substance Abuse Specialist
  • Drug Abuse Worker

Is There Job Demand for Substance Abuse Social Workers?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 123,900 jobs in the United States for Substance Abuse Social Worker. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 19.4% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 24,000 new jobs for Substance Abuse Social Worker by 2026. There will be an estimated 15,900 positions for Substance Abuse Social Worker per year.

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The states with the most job growth for Substance Abuse Social Worker are Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Maine, Rhode Island, or Illinois. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

How Much Does a Substance Abuse Social Worker Make?

The average yearly salary of a Substance Abuse Social Worker ranges between $28,310 and $78,910.

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Substance Abuse Social Workers who work in New Jersey, District of Columbia, or Connecticut, make the highest salaries.

How much do Substance Abuse Social Workers make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $36,700
Alaska $46,420
Arizona $39,390
Arkansas $40,560
California $61,640
Colorado $46,980
Connecticut $63,290
Delaware $50,700
District of Columbia $69,690
Florida $44,100
Georgia $39,600
Hawaii $67,930
Idaho $47,720
Illinois $46,540
Indiana $43,040
Iowa $47,580
Kansas $40,900
Kentucky $35,600
Louisiana $40,960
Maine $56,000
Maryland $53,780
Massachusetts $43,270
Michigan $50,060
Minnesota $55,460
Mississippi $41,470
Missouri $38,880
Montana $37,950
Nebraska $41,320
Nevada $60,540
New Hampshire $57,110
New Jersey $79,130
New Mexico $45,260
New York $62,130
North Carolina $50,270
North Dakota $53,760
Ohio $44,840
Oklahoma $37,380
Oregon $49,380
Pennsylvania $38,440
Rhode Island $52,730
South Carolina $35,330
South Dakota $40,330
Tennessee $38,180
Texas $40,470
Utah $45,830
Vermont $42,620
Virginia $51,660
Washington $53,780
West Virginia $33,880
Wisconsin $46,730
Wyoming $49,660

What Tools & Technology do Substance Abuse Social Workers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Substance Abuse Social Workers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Adobe Acrobat
  • Microsoft SharePoint
  • Database software
  • Microsoft Publisher
  • Scheduling software
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer
  • Medical procedure coding software
  • Medical condition coding software
  • Corel WordPerfect
  • Adobe Systems Adobe PageMaker
  • Patient electronic medical record EMR software

How to Become a Substance Abuse Social Worker

Individuals working as a Substance Abuse Social Worker have obtained the following education levels:

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How Long Does it Take to Become a Substance Abuse Social Worker?

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Where Substance Abuse Social Workers Are Employed

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Below are examples of industries where Substance Abuse Social Workers work:

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Similar Careers

Those interested in being a Substance Abuse Social Worker may also be interested in:

References:

Image Credit: Army Medicine via https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Reusing_content_outside_Wikimedia

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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