AA as a fellowship is understood to be nonprofessional and hierarchical, always keeping program above personalities, so they say. At the same time, there are times when an addict needs the help of an addiction professional. There are different times points in recovery where an addict/ alcoholic might access professional assistance. For example, if the addict is encountering problems at work, often one of the best ways to not only get treatment, but keep one's job is through the Employee Assistance Program (usually shortened to EAP) offered at many larger places of employment. If you're not sure if your place of employment has such a program, inquire through the Human Resources Department. Even smaller companies offer EAP services through a shared agreement, that is, they outsource such services.
If you a person looking for services for someone you love, or maybe even planning an intervention for a loved one with a drug or alcohol problem, be clear: no one should attempt to conduct an intervention without the supervision of a qualified intervention specialist. The simplest way to find an appropriate intervention specialist is to get a referral from the addict's physician or the treatment center you have made arrangements with. If the addict's employer is involved in the intervention, you may be able to access an intervention specialist through the company's employee assistance program. There is no certification process or licensure requirement to conduct an intervention. However, you should choose a professional with at least a Master's level of education in some aspect of behavioral health. The interventionist should also have completed continuing education in the intervention process and have experience in conducting them. Although a substance abuse counseling plays a very different role than, for example, a sponsor, often professional substance abuse counselors are in recovery. It can be very helpful to choose an interventionist who is themselves in recovery; often they are able to more directly issues than a professional without an addiction history.