The University of New England has received a three-year grant totaling $870,000 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for a new project entitled “Collaborative SBIRT Training for Maine’s Future Health Profession Leaders.”
SBIRT stands for Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral for Treatment, an evidence-based practice used to identify, reduce and prevent problematic use, abuse, and dependence on alcohol and illicit drugs. The project will be directed by Clay Graybeal, Ph.D., professor in the School of Social Work, and will provide training to UNE health professions students in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, College of Pharmacy, College of Dental Medicine, Dental Hygiene, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physician Assistant and Social Work. Kris Hall, MFA, will serve as Project Manager.
SBIRT is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), through the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT). The purpose of this program, according to SAMHSA, “is to develop and implement training programs to teach students in health professions the skills necessary to provide evidence-based screening and brief intervention and refer patients who are at risk for a substance use disorder (SUD) to appropriate treatment. Additionally, the training will develop the leadership skills needed in order to champion the implementation of SBIRT throughout the United States healthcare system with the ultimate goal of helping clients avoid substance use disorders. The specialty substance use treatment system is often not appropriate, or is unavailable, to those who are at risk for SUD. Therefore, the intended outcomes of this program are to increase the adoption and practice of SBIRT throughout the health care delivery system with the ultimate goal of helping clients avoid substance use disorders. A key aspect of SBIRT is the integration and coordination of screening and treatment components into a system of services. This system links a community’s specialized treatment programs with a network of early intervention and referral activities that are conducted during health care delivery.”
With its significant number of clinical health professions, UNE is poised to become a leader in insuring that its graduates will be prepared to practice with raised awareness. This includes an understanding that substance abuse issues play a key role in the health of individuals and communities, and that intervention can occur in even the briefest encounter with a sensitive, caring, and professional health care provider.
FMI: Contact Clay Graybeal, Ph.D., Professor of Social Work (cgraybeal@une,edu or 207-221-4509) or Kris Hall, Project Manager, (firstname.lastname@example.org or 207-221-4491)