2020 Pediatric Research Forum Poster Session

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The rates of substance use among teens in NM are among the highest in the US. Regular use of illicit drugs during adolescence can compromise mental and physical health and contribute to poorer longer-term outcomes. The Strategic Implementation of Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) in School‐Based Health Centers (SBHCs) [SISS] initiative implements and evaluates the SBIRT model, with a goal of identifying, reducing, and preventing substance use in New Mexico (NM) adolescents. For this analysis, we describe baseline data on the provision of SBIRT to adolescents at‐risk for substance abuse.


From October to December 2019, students from five participating SBHCs were screened for substance use using the CRAFFT tool, a validated instrument for adolescents aged 12-21. When a student screens positive on the CRAFFT, SBHC providers inquire about current substance use (past 30 day use of marijuana, alcohol, opioids and other substances), provide brief intervention and attempt to engage in follow-up care and referral to behavioral health, as appropriate.


A total of 875 adolescents (≤20 years) received SBHC services across five participating sites. Eighty-three adolescents (9.5%) screened positive for substance use based on the CRAFFT tool, and 58 (69%) received SBHC follow-up care within 30 days of the positive screen. Of those 58 adolescents, 10 (17%) had a follow-up visit with a behavioral health provider, 28 (48%) had a follow-up visit with a primary care provider, and 20 (35%) had follow-ups with both behavioral health and primary care providers.


Baseline results of the implementation of SISS are encouraging. SBHCs offer a unique opportunity for adolescent engagement and follow-up care compared to other primary care clinics. Efforts are on-going to further improve follow‐up care and enhance SBHC provider training in essential SBIRT communication skills for teens with positive substance use screens.


Presented at the Annual Pediatric Research Forum Poster session. Contact Mary M Ramos Mramos@salud.unm.edu for questions.

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