SBIRT: Screening, Brief Intervention,
and Referral to Treatment
SBIRT is a comprehensive, integrated, public health approach to the delivery of early intervention for individuals with risky alcohol and drug use, as well as the timely referral to more intensive substance abuse treatment for those who have substance use disorders. Primary care centers, hospital emergency rooms, trauma centers, and community health settings provide opportunities for early intervention with at-risk substance users before more severe consequences occur.
One of the strengths of the SAMHSA SBIRT model is that it screens all patients regardless of an identified disorder, allowing healthcare professionals in a variety of settings to address the spectrum of such behavioral health problems even when the patient is not actively seeking an intervention or treatment for his or her problems.
“As a nurse, I love the MI work. I jump at any opportunity to practice it and inform my approach towards patients with it. We need more health professionals trained in the MI and SBIRT work.”
“I thoroughly appreciated the trainer’s experience, knowlege, flexibility, ability to give feedback in the moment and honoring and encouraging participants.”