On November 19, CTC-RI, in collaboration with the Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities, and Hospitals (BHDDH), hosted a meeting with numerous stakeholders that reflected on the past three years of work supporting Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT). SBIRT is a best practice for the early identification and treatment of alcohol and other substance use disorders.
In 2017, CTC-RI was awarded a five-year contract from BHDDH to implement SBIRT screening across RI. Trained screeners are working in more than 50 settings in RI, including primary care, hospital emergency rooms, urgent care settings, and the Department of Corrections. Across the past three years of the grant, over 22,000 Rhode Islanders have been screened. Over 15% screened positive for risky alcohol and/or substance use and were able to receive an intervention, such as education or a referral for treatment. A sample of patients who screened positive are followed up with 6 months later and re-screened. The data show an average of a 40% decrease in the number of days in the last month using substances.