SBIRT on Campuses

SBIRT on Campuses

Implementing SBIRT in Maryland Collaborative Schools


SBIRT (Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment) is an evidence-based comprehensive, integrated public health approach to providing early intervention and treatment services to individuals with high-risk drinking or substance use patterns.1 The Maryland Collaborative is working with partner schools to strengthen the implementation of SBIRT on their campuses, and provides technical assistance and guidance around how to approach SBIRT based on each school’s unique settings and resources.

Research shows that the majority of young adults will access health services in any given year,2 and federal guidelines recommend universal screening of adults 18 and older in all primary health care settings.3 One approach that many Maryland Collaborative schools are working toward is to conduct universal screening of students for alcohol as a standard procedure in health and/or counseling clinics, and then establishing a system to refer students to further counseling or treatment as needed. For schools without formal health or counseling centers, The Maryland Collaborative provides technical assistance and guidance regarding screening and brief intervention approaches in various settings on campus (e.g., residence life, academic advising) and brokering relationships with off-campus providers for more intensive interventions if needed.


  1. Behavioral Health Administration, Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Maryland SBIRT: Change the conversation for better health.
  2. O’Hara, B., & Caswell, K. (2012). Health status, health insurance, and medical services utilization: 2010.Current Population Reports. Washington, DC: United States Census Bureau.
  3. Moyer, V. A. (2013). Screening and behavioral counseling interventions in primary care to reduce alcohol misuse: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation statement. Annals of Internal Medicine, 159, 210-218.