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Spokane Teaching Health Center SBIRT Student Training

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration – $779,992

SBIRT (Screening, Brief Intervention, & Referral for Treatment) is an evidenced based strategy for screening patients for alcohol and drug abuse. The grant will allow us to train faculty, preceptors, primary care practitioners, medical residents, and health professional students how to implement SBIRT in practice.


The Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) Health Professions Student Training Program at the Spokane Teaching Health Center (STHC) will integrate training for recognizing and treating substance use disorders into interprofessional training programs that target students in Spokane, Washington participating in Doctor of Nursing Practice, Doctor of Pharmacy and Doctor of Medicine and in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine and Psychiatry Residency programs. A total of 822 health professionals and residents will receive this training over a three-year period.
The specific goal is to integrate the STHC SBIRT program across the continuum of health professional education, leveraging the unique capabilities of the STHC and the University District Health Clinic (UHD Clinic), a new interdisciplinary training clinic in Spokane. The SBIRT training will enable students across educational levels in different disciplines to train together and better support practicing together in the future. To support this goal, the STHC SBIRT program will have the following objectives:

  • Objective 1) Provide training in use of the SBIRT tool and techniques to the clinical preceptors and faculty who teach and provide clinical supervision to students in each of the health professions that receive training through the STHC and UHD Clinic.
  • Objective 2) Integrate the SBIRT tool and strategies into the curriculum for each of the health professions that receive training through the STHC and UHD Clinic.
  • Objective 3) Expand awareness and use of SBIRT techniques beyond the health professions training programs to health professionals currently practicing in eastern Washington and northern Idaho.

That impact will not be limited to the Spokane area. All of the participating programs in the STHC already use advanced videoconferencing and telehealth systems to promote training and outreach to providers and patients in rural communities around the region. These systems will enable telepsychiatry and support for treatment of substance use disorders regardless of where patients live. Integrating SBIRT into the UHD Clinic and its education programs will have a ripple effect across eastern Washington and northern Idaho.

Primary Investigator

Barb Richardson
Barbara Richardson, PhD