Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT)

The Kentuckiana Health Collaborative has partnered with the Kentucky Opioid Response Effort (KORE), a federal grant to the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services as part of the 21st Century Cures Act. The purpose of KORE is to expand access to evidence-based opioid prevention, treatment, recovery, and harm reduction services and supports in response to Kentucky’s opioid crisis.

As part of KORE, the Kentuckiana Health Collaborative developed a toolkit for primary care providers to Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT), an insurance reimbursable approach to screening and treatment for people with substance use disorders and those at risk of developing them. The focus is on SBIRT’s application to opioid use disorder.

In late 2018, this toolkit was dispersed to over 4,100 primary care providers and practice administrators throughout the Commonwealth.  The Kentuckiana Health Collaborative aims to increase provider awareness and utilization of SBIRT services, to ultimately improve screening and referral to treatment for opioid use disorder.

What is SBIRT?


A healthcare professional administers standardized assessment tools to identify risky opioid use behaviors.

Brief Intervention

For patients who screen positive for risky behaviors, the health professional facilitates a short conversation including, feedback, motivation, and advice.

Referral to Treatment

Patients who require further assessment or treatment  are referred to the appropriate programs.

Webinar: Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) – Addressing Unhealthy Substance Use in Primary Care Settings

October 10, 2018 12:00pm-1:00pm EST.

The Kentuckiana Health Collaborative hosted an interactive webinar on Wednesday, October 10, 2018 to discuss the adoption of Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) in primary care settings as a means to addressing unhealthy substance use among patients. Complementary to the previously released toolkit, the webinar expanded on and reviewed the SBIRT process. Rationale for implementation, possible barriers and solutions, and community linkages to assist in the process were also discussed. A panel of expert speakers was featured to discuss how different stakeholders could work together to implement SBIRT.