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Sep 9, 2016 11:39 AM

New England College, health center partnership targets NH opioid crisis

The Associated Press

CONCORD (AP) — A new program at New England College is aimed at boosting New Hampshire's mental health workforce and addressing its growing substance abuse crisis.

The revamped master's degree counseling program includes partnerships with four of the state's 10 community mental health centers in Derry, Concord, Manchester and Laconia. Employees who enroll get a 10 percent discount on tuition, and NEC faculty teach the courses at the worksites. Next year, the college also plans to add a certificate program for substance abuse treatment.

The U.S. Labor Department has estimated there is a need for a 22 percent increase in addiction counselors between 2014 and 2024, and federal officials and the National Association for Addiction Professionals have scheduled several forums on the issue around the country. The next one is Sept. 14 in Manchester.

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