October 11, 2017

Addiction treatment to be added to social work education in Mass.

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An agreement worked out by Gov. Charlie Baker's office had led nine schools offering social work programs to incorporate courses dealing with addiction treatment and prevention into core requirements for graduation.

Students at the nine social work schools in Massachusetts will learn about preventing and treating substance misuse under an agreement worked out by the Baker administration.

Schools have agreed to incorporate the learning into core requirements for graduating and participating as social workers in Massachusetts, Gov. Charlie Baker said after a meeting in his office with deans from nine schools.

"I simply want to say thanks to the schools for stepping up and working with us on this," Baker said.

Boston College School of Social Work dean Gautam Yadama and representatives of eight other Massachusetts social work schools met Tuesday with Secretary Marylou Sudders (right) and Gov. Charlie Baker. [Photo: Sam Doran/SHNS]

"Often the treatment of addictions has been a specialty rather than sort of core to your training as a social worker," Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders said. She said, "They will infuse addiction, the addiction principles, within their core courses."

Collaboration is needed to address the problem, according to Gautam Yadama, dean of the Boston College School of Social Work.

"This is a very complex social problem that's affecting our communities in the Commonwealth," Yadama said. He added, "We cannot be in silos of professions. We cannot be in the silos of our own respective school."

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