Date of Completion

4-26-2018

Embargo Period

4-20-2018

Major Advisor

Thomas Babor, PhD

Associate Advisor

Richard Fortinsky, PhD

Associate Advisor

James Grady, PhD

Associate Advisor

Bonnie McRee, PhD

Associate Advisor

Jane Ungemack, PhD

Field of Study

Public Health

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy

Open Access

Open Access

Abstract

Abstract

Substance abuse is a major public health burden, accounting for significant social, physical, and health problems and resulting in considerable health care costs. Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is a public health approach that provides early intervention for individuals with risky alcohol and drug use and timely referral to specialty substance abuse treatment for individuals with substance use disorders. This observational study utilized a single group pre-post test design to test the odds of admission to specialty substance abuse treatment based on severity of substance involvement as determined by the Alcohol, Smoking, and Substance Involvement Screening Test (ASSIST). A secondary aim was to assess differential effects in admission to specialty treatment based on age, gender, race/ethnicity, ASSIST severity, alcohol and/or other substance reported, pre-SBIRT mental health treatment, and pre-SBIRT specialty substance abuse treatment among study participants who received a BI or BI/RT.

Significant effect was found for study participants who screened at high-risk on the ASSIST for alcohol and/or other substances and who were offered a BI/RT and who had a pre-SBIRT admission to specialty treatment. The odds of the BI/RT study participants (OR= 4.751; 95% CI 2.634, 8.571) with prior substance abuse treatment having a post-SBIRT admission to specialty treatment was 4.751 times greater than the odds of study participants who did not have prior substance abuse treatment admission. The role of BI and the substantially significant role of BI/RT, as components of SBIRT, are confirmed as a promising approach for early intervention for substance use disorders.

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