What is ASAM Level of Care Certification?

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Session Overview

This session provides an overview of ASAM Level of Care certification and the pilot process that was used to ensure its validity. ASAM Level of Care certification, delivered in partnership with CARF International, is the first program of its kind to independently assess and verify treatment programs’ ability to deliver services consistent with the levels of care described in The ASAM Criteria. It will initially cover adult residential programs at Levels 3.1, 3.5, and 3.7 of The ASAM Criteria. The certification demonstrates a program’s capacity to deliver a specific level of care, thereby differentiating between the many levels of care available for addiction treatment.

Paul H. Earley, MD, DFASAM

President, American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM)

Dr. Earley has been an Addiction Medicine Physician for 36 years. He treats all types of addictive disorders and specializes in the assessment and treatment of health care professionals. As a therapist, he works with patients already in recovery, providing long term therapy for those who suffer from this disease. His professional expertise extends to advocacy for professionals before agencies and licensing boards.

Dr. Earley is a dynamic speaker and educator; he speaks and trains on topics of addiction, its treatment and addiction among health care professionals. In addition, he trains therapists about the neurobiological basis of psychotherapy. In his travels, he has provided training in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Switzerland.
He is the author of three books and numerous articles on addiction and its treatment. He is a contributing author to the ASAM Textbook: Principles of Addiction Medicine, as author of the chapter: Physician Health Programs and Addiction among Physicians. He is a contributing author to the ASAM Criteria. His two most recent books Recovery Mind Training and The Implementation Guide to Recovery Mind Training are published by Central Recovery Press.


His work was featured in the documentary series on addiction entitled Close to Home by Bill Moyers. Dr. Earley is a Distinguished Fellow of ASAM and has been on the board of ASAM for over 20 years in several capacities. He is the current president of ASAM. He has been the Medical Director of two nationally acclaimed addiction programs specializing in the care of health care professionals who suffer from addiction illnesses. Currently, Dr. Earley is the Medical Director of the Georgia Professionals Health Program, Inc., the Physicians Health Program (PHP) for the state of Georgia in the U.S. With Earley Consultancy, LLC, he works with numerous treatment facilities, providing training in cohesive care, treatment effectiveness and staff development.


Dr. Earley is the recipient of the ASAM Annual Award in 2015. ASAM states the award is presented “For outstanding contributions to the growth and vitality of our Society, for thoughtful leadership in the field, and for deep understanding of the art and science of Addiction Medicine” and “For expanding the frontiers of the field of Addiction Medicine and broadening our understanding of the addictive process, through research and innovation.”

Michael W. Johnson

MA, CAP

Michael joined CARF as managing director of the Behavioral Health accreditation area in 2013. A certified addictions professional, Michael has more than 30 years of experience as a clinician, manager, and executive working in mental health, substance abuse, and intellectual disabilities. He was a CARF surveyor for 16 years and holds a master's degree in communications from the University of Central Florida.

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