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Recovery Month Spotlight: SBIRT Promotes Recovery

September 7, 2023

By: Laura Saunders, MSSW

Binge Drinking Infographic

Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is an evidence-based, cost-saving substance use prevention service, as well as an important public health intervention method. Approximately 26% of adults in the U.S. report heavy substance use in the past year, and the unhealthy use of alcohol is the fourth-leading preventable cause of death in the United States. Implementing SBIRT in primary care and school-based health care clinics will increase the detection of at-risk use, minimize the need for specialized treatment, and direct individuals to alternative recovery services when needed. Another significant benefit of implementing SBIRT is reduction of stigma through the use of standardized screening procedures and the normalization of discussion about substance use.

In honor of National Recovery Month, I am very happy to share that the Michigan Office of Recovery Oriented Systems of Care and the Great Lakes ATTC will be co-facilitating a 5-year SBIRT project in Michigan with funding from SAMHSA. The technical assistance and implementation support provided through this project will ensure an estimated 110,000 Michiganders receive SBIRT services.

As the project manager, I bring 30 years of experience in SUD research and clinical practice, as well as experience as the Senior Manager of Clinical Site Operations for a similar SAMHSA-funded grant in the state of Wisconsin. Throughout this expansive Michigan project, my focus will be on providing rigorous, high-quality training and ongoing strengths-based support for SBIRT services staff. As always, I will incorporate the quality concepts of empathy, partnership, and acceptance into my training curriculum and ongoing staff support services.

If we want to help people do better, helpers have to be better equipped to do this work. I'm excited to bring this needed technical assistance to the people of Michigan and to be able to help implement SBIRT services in primary care and school settings throughout the state.

Learn more about SBIRT by visiting!

If you're interested in SBIRT training and other resources, visit the Great Lakes ATTC training and events calendar and products and resources catalog!  


Download the What is binge drinking? sticker to share in presentations or on social media.

SBIRT Promotes Recovery
Laura Saunders, MSSW
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