Tennessee Nurse Practitioner Association

SBIRT Program

Posted over 3 years ago by Irene Bean

I wanted to share a video which I had the privilege to be a part.


SBIRT is a substance abuse screening and referral to treatment initiative. It is patient-centered and offers early intervention to identify and address substance misuse. SBIRT stands for Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment. It is an education and early intervention tool used in primary care settings. Care providers who use SBIRT ask all patients about their substance use and discuss use levels confidentially with patients. A significant number of Americans overuse alcohol or drugs, but not to the extent of "abuse." Research shows that these patients expect to talk to their providers about substance use, and that they are receptive to low-intensity interventions. SBIRT provides the tools to rapidly identify and sensitively discuss risky substance use and enables patients to decrease their use.

It has been proven effective for patients who are not addicted, but whose substance use puts them at risk for accidents, liver damage, cardiac issues and other serious health concerns. These individuals make up about 20% of the U.S. population. SBIRT is ideal for use in primary, specialty and emergency care settings. At intake, all adult patients are asked two questions related to amount and frequency of alcohol and drug use. When indicated, patients may then receive further screening and be offered a motivational interview or a referral for behavioral health treatment. Watch this video to learn more and to hear from some of the Tennessee doctors utilizing SBIRT in their practice. - See more at: http://www.tn.gov/behavioral-health/article/substance-abuse-screenings-in-tennessee-sbirt-tn#sthash.sHrA5ilW.dpuf