What is a SAP?
A Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who helps DOT regulated employees return to work after a DOT violation has occurred, such as a failed drug and/or alcohol test or a refusal to test. As described in the DOT employee handbook (DOT, 2019a), SAPs are the “gatekeepers to the re-entry program.” They determine when a safety-sensitive employee is prepared to return to work.
SAPs act as a neutral party and do not decide if an employee should be terminated or re-hired. Those decisions are up to the employer. A SAP’s job is to provide a personalized treatment and/or education plan for each individual, in alignment with DOT protocol. SAPs conduct face-to-face evaluations to approve employees to return to safety-sensitive duties.
What is a SAE?
A Substance Abuse Expert (SAE) works with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to assist employees in the Fitness for Duty process. The SAE determines when a safety-sensitive employee is prepared to return to work.
SAEs provide evaluations for employees under 10CFR Part 26 of NRC code to determine fitness for duty concerns related to substance use and drug and/or testing violations in alignment with NRC protocol. SAEs conduct face-to-face evaluations to approve employees to return to safety-sensitive duties.
You must be one of the following:
- Licensed or Certified Physician
- Psychologist and/or Social Worker
- EAP Professional
- Drug and Alcohol Counselor certified by the National Association Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) or International Certification Reciprocity Consortium (ICRC)
- Marriage and Family Therapist (SAP ONLY)
Additional steps to complete:
- Complete qualification training and examination
- Possess basic knowledge about how it relates to employers interest in safety-sensitive duties
- Knowledgeable on the DOT regulations including individual agency regulations (SAP), or NRC regulations (SAE)
- Maintain continued education credits (CEUs)
- Clinical experience in treating and diagnosing substance use disorders and related conditions.
Become part of the ASAP Network!
ASAP offers qualification courses and discounted exam access to help you become a SAP and/or SAE. ASAP is listed on the DOT Office of Drug & Alcohol Policy Compliance website as a “SAP Training Resource”.
ASAP provides you the guidance and support for qualification training and/or qualification exam under:
- Department of Transportation
(SAP Online Course)
- Nuclear Regulatory Commission
(SAE Qualification Training Course)
Top 5 Reasons to become a SAP/SAE:
- Generate additional income
- Diversify your skill set and practice
- Engage with new population of clients
- Growth opportunities
- ASAP Support Team