Nov 1, 2023

Upcoming free continuing education seminar: “Talking with Primary Mental Health Clients About Substance Use”

BCBSRI, in partnership with Aware Recovery, is offering our in-network providers a free continuing education seminar called “Talking with Primary Mental Health Clients About Substance Use.” This seminar will be presented by Sarah Allen Benton, MS, LMHC, LPC, AADC on Wednesday, November 8, 2023, from 12-1 p.m.

Program description: 

Behavioral health treatment is often compartmentalized, which can cause challenges for some providers. Clinicians with expertise in mental health treatment are not always comfortable addressing a client’s potential substance use disorder. Providers also may not have the training around how to most appropriately work with clients who are in a precontemplation and contemplation stages of change or who have not explored how their substance use may impact their mental health recovery. This presentation is designed to increase the skill set for providers working with a primary mental health disorder population around integrating the beginning stages of dialogue around substance use as well as a better understanding of the importance of this integrated approach.


  • To discuss evidence-based concepts of integrated treatment for dual diagnosis clients
  • To learn about the self-medication and “addiction as a disorder of self-care” concepts as they relate to this population
  • To explore appropriate questions and conversations to have with primary mental health clients who are in the precontemplation and contemplation stages of change
  • To learn various screening methods for substance use disorders
  • To identify medical symptom clusters that may present for clients with substance use disorders

If you would like to attend, we ask that you RSVP to our Behavioral Health team at Behavioralhealth@bcbsri.org by October 25, 2023. Once you have signed up for the event, a confirmation email will be sent to you. 

This seminar is approved by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and offers 1 CEU credit – please refer to your local licensing body to confirm professional continuing education requirements.