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Improve recruitment

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Workforce Development Committee

Report of Progress

December 2010

  1. Develop a marketing objective to actively raise the awareness of students in high schools and colleges/universities of opportunities in the field of substance use services.

  • Established Recruitment Subcommittee with Higher Education Partners

  • Developing a Field Placement Directory to connect students with internship opportunities. To date a Survey Form has been developed and circulated. It is consistently promoted and remains available on the MADC website. 14 providers have responded to date. Higher Education partners are in discussion with members to explore best format to enhance connections between parties.

  • Career Kiosk was offered at the 2010 MADC Conference 2010. The committee is exploring ways to enhance the effort during 2011 conference.

  • MADC is pursuing partnership with corporate sponsors to offer scholarships for current students to attend the 2011 MADC Conference.

  • The Directory of Substance Abuse Programs was launched on MADC website . This directory provides information and links to all higher education partners currently offering programs throughout the state. (

  1. Place substance use curricula track in all behavioral healthcare departments in Maryland’s higher education institutions, including increasing the number of institutions that offer a fifteen credit minor in substance use service. *Also 3 credit AOD-specific ethics for LCADC’s & CPC-AD’s

  • Exploratory efforts have been launched through the Recruitment Subcommittee to gain greater understanding of the full offerings at each institution.

  • A telephone survey and script are being developed to reach out and make personal contact with all higher education partners. The calls will begin in the spring of 2011.

  1. Review benefit and salary packages offered by public and private providers within the State and in contiguous states with the goal of publishing standards of compensation and establishing a financing structure for the purchase of substance abuse services that takes into account adequate compensation for providers. (This should include provider administrative and clinical positions and employees of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration)

  • Prepared and circulated salary survey. Prepared report of findings. Limited participation.

  • Currently exploring opportunities to utilize National Council for Behavioral Health salary survey.

  1. Identify those personnel policies at local and state levels that pose barriers to timely hiring of staff with the goal of eliminating those barriers through changing policies or temporarily granting exceptions to those policies during the workforce shortage crisis.

  • Established relationship with Board of Professional Counselors and Therapists. Specifically supported efforts of the Regulations and Legislation Committee. Also reviewed and provided input regarding the AOD out-of-state application forms

  • Circulated alert to all state providers to assess their input on existing barriers.

  • Workforce Development Committee reviewing full range of workforce egulations and policies with ADAA.

Sampling of responses:

  • small employment pool

  • too rigid requirements by the Board - it is ridiculous to think that most college graduates have taken 15 credits in alcohol and drug abuse counseling.  A lot of eligible candidates are not able to qualify due to this.  I think a BA degree in human services should suffice with their going to training after hire.

  • Pay is low for comparable jobs with a degree.

  • Background checks

  • Difficulty in getting license/certification transferred from another state Time to interview/advertise/hire Lack of updated list of eligibles Lack of people interested in specific areas of the state- specifically the shore Funding cut

  • The economic downturn has created an inability to fill positions due to budget reductions. ( staff is required to do more with less)

  • St. Mary’s County is a rural area and there is a definite shortage of licensed professionals as well as medical staff (psychiatrist’s, nurse practitioners, physician assistant’s, etc.). Recruitment from outside of the general area is a challenge.

  • The state of Maryland’s reciprocity of other licensed professionals from other parts of the country is not professional friendly; which prevents immediate filling of vacant positions of out of state applicants for desired positions.

  • The average median income in St. Mary’s County is approximately $72,000/yr; this identifies a specific population in this area which is the Naval Air Station, Patuxent River (primarily engineers and NAVAIR industry). Due to the median income the wages do not equal the cost of living for persons in the substance abuse profession.

  • Clarifying or developing the recovery process is key to the success of the substance abuse community. Initiating recovery coaches and more community based intervention with the population lends to how to adequately serve the identified population.

  1. Work with licensing/certifying authority and state legislature to identify methods of increasing the number of approved individuals in the workforce during this work force crisis. (Part of d)

  1. Identify methods of bringing individuals in recovery into the workforce and seek ways to reduce the barriers that prevent them from joining the workforce (certification and licensure, education and training, etc.).

  • We are collaborating with NCADD-MD on this goal. They have been actively addressing this issue for some time and will be serving as the lead partner on related efforts.

a) Explore salary structure and other compensation packages, including retention bonuses. (See above)

b) Develop a state-wide, structured mentoring program to develop clinical, administrative and leadership

skills in the current workforce.

  • Not addressed at this time

c) Develop structured progressive training curricula on leadership for the entire workforce from the

beginning counselor/preventionist to the “seasoned” program manager.

  • Exploring emerging leader and leadership development offerings under the auspices of a potential Workforce Development Institute. Currently in discussion with a potential funder/

The items below have been pulled out of the committee’s current efforts.

Develop a state-wide system of quality supervision, including an on-going training and preceptorship


  • The committee believes the ADAA should take a leadership role on this goal.

Review current loan forgiveness programs and explore ways to maximize its use. Explore the use of “sign- up” bonuses to attract candidates to the field.

Identify methods to actively use existing “pipelines” and programs that provide career counseling to young adults. Identify opportunities in current stimulus package for workforce development. (HRSA training money)

  • Both items above have been tabled due to economic considerations.

Additional Sampling of Accomplishments

  • Develop cultural linguistic competency goal.

Goal I: Facilitate establishment and maintenance of a statewide structure that shares resources and accountability in the coordination of, and access to, comprehensive recovery-oriented services.
Domain 6: Workforce Development. This domain addresses an organization’s efforts to recruit and retain a culturally and linguistically representative staff to ensure that staff and other service providers have the requisite attitudes, knowledge, and skills for delivering culturally competent services. Areas of focus include recruitment and retention of diverse staff, linguistic competence, training and supervision
Objective 6: Ameliorate the workforce shortage
Action Steps

Improve Recruitment:

Strategies: Recruit and retain a diverse workforce that is culturally and linguistically competent and sensitive.

  • Recruit, train, and advance workforce from diverse backgrounds.

  • Recruit, train, and retain a workforce that is more reflective of the diversity of the community.

  • Design and implement educational programs to ensure that the workforce is both culturally competent and sensitive.

  • Sponsored and facilitated a provider retreat to prioritize issues and needs surrounding health care reform

  • Regularly updated full membership and committee members regarding activities of the Workforce Workgroup and engaged their input.

  • Prepared and presented testimony on behalf of all three disciplines that make up Behavioral Health to Workforce Workgroup

  • Collaborated with stakeholders to prepare written comments to Workforce Workgroup

  • Prepared response to Workforce Development White Paper Draft

  • Committee members have worked very hard to gain an understanding of the workforce issues that are affecting the profession as a result of health care reform

  • Convened and supported Health Care Reform Implementation in Maryland Foru

  • Convened and launched Scholarship Committee.

  • The committee has worked over the past several months to establish scholarship criteria, candidate qualifications, and terms of giving. The MADC website currently offers the opportunity for donors to contribute online.

  • Worked with the University of Maryland Law School Drug Policy Clinic to launch Parity Project. Efforts included: Parity Training, Provider Parity Resource Guide, On-going subcommittee work exploring Parity authorization issues.

  • "Benchmarking for Organizational Excellence in Addiction Treatment" initiative. This national benchmarking initiative transforms static performance data into information that providers can utilize to improve their organization's performance

  • E-learning. We are exploring several avenues to enhance the offering of virtual learning throughout the state. The committee is also working to establish legislation that will change the current limited opportunity to earn online credits.

  • 2011 MADC Conference. The theme of the upcoming conference is “Navigating the New Landscape” and will be dedicated to how Health Care Reform will affect Behavioral Health professionals. Several keynote speakers and break out sessions will be dedicated to workforce issues.

  • We are currently preparing our legislative agenda for the 2011 session.

Targets include:

  • Proposing legislation to change the requirements regarding online courses to allow flexibility and access in obtaining licensing requirements

  • Modify requirements for college courses to be consistent with what is offered and available to students interested in the field.

  • Changing policies to allow for payment of all levels of certification and licensing.

  • Streamline the categories of licensing and credentialing categories and eliminate rarely used categories while allowing current holders to practice.

  • Align mental health reimbursable categories with equivalent categories for substance use disorder to ensure payment.

  • National Efforts. We are also working on important workforce issues that affect our state at the national level. Through our efforts with State Associations of Addiction Services we have supported the following efforts:

  • Maryland substance use disorder providers have participated in a Self-Assessment of Readiness and Capabilities survey. We have the compiled data to help inform our training decisions.

  • We have actively participated in the Coalition for Whole Heath efforts.

  • We have participated in SAMHSA initiatives and responded to several workforce issues that have been raised.

  • We are supporting SAAS efforts in developing the Model Scope of Practice for Substance Use Disorder Counseling and Career Ladder for the Field of Substance Use Disorder

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