Substance Use Disorder Specialist

Website King County Seattle Public Health


Public Health- Seattle & King County values diverse perspectives and life experiences. The Department encourages people of all backgrounds to apply, including people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, and veterans.

King County is seeking to hire up to three Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Specialists within Public Health – Seattle & King County, Jail Health Services (JHS) Division. These full-time positions are Term-Limited Temporary positions. Term-Limited Temporary positions are “at-will” positions but are eligible for benefits. The projected length of these Term-Limited Temporary positions is two years. These vacancies can also be filled as a Special Duty opportunity.

The purpose of JHS is to assure that basic health and human services are available to the incarcerated population in the King County adult correctional facilities. They provide a broad range of health care–including medication-assisted treatment (MAT) with buprenorphine for individuals with opioid use disorder.

This is a unique opportunity to be part of a team that is dedicated to having an immediate and lasting impact on their community.

Lived experience is deeply valued. Individuals in recovery an d those who have had personal experience with the criminal legal system (and are not under any current jurisdiction) are encouraged to apply.

There are two primary roles for SUD Specialists at this time.

  • 1 position as MAT Specialist: Connect patients who receive medications for opioid use disorder to community-based provider upon release.
  • 2 positions as Inpatient Assessment Coordinator: Assess patients’ needs for inpatient treatment and coordinate placement in an inpatient facility.

Work Schedule:

40-hour work week including weekend and evening shifts.

Work Location:

This position works with patients inside and outside of the Maleng Regional Justice Center (MRJC) in Kent and the King County Correctional Facility (KCCF) in Seattle and requires travel between facilities and to multiple community locations. The MRJC is located at 401 4th Ave N, Kent, WA 98032 and KCCF is located at 500 5th Ave., Seattle, WA 98104.

Who May Apply:

This position is open to the general public.

For Special Duty Assignment interest, you must be a Career Service, Career Service Exempt or other regular (non-temporary) employees in King County who have completed their initial County probation. You must have supervisor approval prior to taking a Special Duty Assignment.

Application Process:

Applications will be reviewed after the job posting closes. The following items are required to be considered for this vacancy:

NEOGOV/Government Jobs on-line or paper application

  1. Supplemental questionnaire responses
  2. Resume

You may attach multiple documents if you wish:

  • Copy and paste one or more documents into the text resume section of the application.
  • Attach multiple documents/files in the resume attachment section.
  • Your application may be rejected as incomplete if you do not include the standard information in the application.
  • Providing information only in a resume will not be considered a complete

For information regarding the application process, please contact Mark Lacy at


MAT Specialist – Examples of Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide outreach, screening, assessment, brief-intervention, and psycho-educational support services to patients receiving MAT services;
  • Facilitate shared treatment decision making with participants in part by providing education to participants on the in-jail and in-community options to treat opioid use disorder;
  • Advocate for participants while in custody and as they transition back to the community, including assisting with enrollment in healthcare coverage and disability-related benefits, linkage to substance use disorder treatment, accessing community resources, and communication with the criminal legal system;
  • Assist participants with navigating and attending appointments in the community, especially those that are thought to improve treatment retention. This includes activities such as outreach, maintaining contact with patients, and escorting and arranging transportation directly to the treatment provider upon release;
  • Provide and monitor cash incentives if any for eligible participants;
  • Document patient contact and services delivered in electronic health record system.

Inpatient Assessment Coordinator – Examples of Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conduct substance use disorder assessments to determine the appropriate level of care following ASAM placement criteria;
  • Collect and review referral information and consult with others as needed to support coordination of services and scheduling of patient assessments;
  • Collect information from collateral resources to aid in determining need for and level of treatment;
  • Based on assessment, coordinate access to the most appropriate programs so that patients access the right level of care that best meets their treatment needs;
  • Schedule admission to or first appointment dates at the program or facility to which patients are referred;
  • Monitor patient access to and involvement with treatment and other providers to help address barriers to treatment; follow up with patient within seven days of referral to assess process and patient’s satisfaction with adjusting to the  program;
  • Coordinate transportation to intake appointments;
  • Work collaborative with patient’s funding sources to obtain initial authorizations for reimbursement;
  • Work cooperatively with the legal system to ensure coordination of services when appropriate;
  • Facilitate shared treatment decision making with participants and help them understand the benefits of assessment and accessing the appropriate level of care as indicated;
  • Provide clinical consultation to referral sources to assist in holistic treatment planning;
  • Use a trauma-informed and strengths-based approach when working with patients;
  • Maintain working knowledge of drug and alcohol treatment agencies and programs;
  • Document patient contact and services delivered in electronic health record system.


  • Registration as a Substance Use Disorder Counselor under WAC 440-22-240.
  • At least 2 years of experience working with individuals with substance use disorders and legal system involvement.
  • Knowledge of intake and assessment techniques and case management practices.
  • Knowledge of community resources and referral agencies appropriate to services offered.
  • Knowledge of trauma-informed care principles and approaches.
  • Knowledge of client-centered principles and approaches.
  • Knowledge of harm reduction principles and approaches.
  • Knowledge of recovery-oriented principles and approaches.
  • Knowledge of anti-racism principles and approaches.
  • Skill in written and oral communications.
  • Skill in working and building rapport with diverse cultural, socio-economic and ethnic populations.
  • Skill in outreach and screening program participants.
  • Skill in understanding and interpreting complex program regulations.
  • Skill in developing effective intervention plans.
  • Ability to travel on a flexible schedule as needed.
  • Must possess valid Washington Driver’s License to drive a county vehicle.

To apply for this job please visit

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