AMHCA Launches New Professional Development Certifications

By Whitney Meyerhoeffer posted 01-16-2020 19:33


Alexandria, VA - The American Mental Health Counselors Association (AMHCA) is pleased to announce that now offers qualified mental health counselors (CMHCs) three professional development certifications:

  • Certification – Clinical Mental Health Counseling Specialist
  • Certification – Diplomate in Advanced Clinical Mental Health Counseling Practice
  • Certification – Fellow in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Education and Research.

Since 2012, AMHCA has recognized outstanding professional development through the Diplomate and Clinical Mental Health Specialist (DCMHS) program. Since the DCMHS certification began, however, AMHCA saw that some CMHCs gain expertise and prominence by following professional development paths that does not always include specialization in a particular area. To recognize this, the Diplomate Committee (now renamed the AMHCA Credentialing Certification Board) recommended to the AMHCA board of directors in 2018 that the Diplomate Program be extended beyond recognizing specialists in a specific area. The board agreed and approved the recommendation and the new AMHCA Credentialing Certification Board will oversee the new Credentialing Program.

“The hunger for more knowledge often drives continued training and the development of areas of specialization and expertise; however, how does the public know that you are a specialist? AMHCA’s advanced practice credentials recognize clinical mental health counselors who develop specializations. These credentials are one way to let the public know that you are committed to the highest quality of care,” notes AMHCA President Eric T. Beeson, PhD, LPC, NCC, ACS, CRC.

AMHCA’s board of directors has approved these three credentialing certifications, which replace the AMHCA Diplomate and Clinical Mental Health Specialist (DCMHS) recognition. AMHCA’s former Diplomate Committee Chair, Mary D. Lutzo, PhD, LMHC, NCC, DCMHS-Trauma, thanks the members of the committee for their work in developing the criteria for AMHCA’s new professional certification program.