Alcohol and Other Drug Use Decreased During a Statewide Screening and Brief Intervention Program
As part of New Mexico’s SAMHSA*-funded initiative to provide screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT), >55,000 adult patients statewide were screened for alcohol and past-year illicit or nonmedical prescription drug use. Behavioral health counselors assessed patients with AUDIT† scores >8 or with affirmative answers to questions regarding illicit or nonmedical prescription drug use, then conducted either brief intervention (BI) or a more intensive service (brief treatment [BT] or referral to treatment [RT]). Of the randomly selected 1290 adult patients who received services, 834 (69%) were available for 6-month follow-up. Pre-/post-analyses were adjusted for confounders and baseline substance use.
- Overall, mean days of past-month substance use decreased regardless of service received (alcohol use from 7.2 to 4.3 days, alcohol intoxication from 5.5 to 3.1 days, and illicit drug use from 6.4 to 2.9 days).
- Past-month alcohol use decreased by 32% in the BI group and 47% in the BT/RT group; past-month drinking to intoxication decreased by 30% in the BI group and 47% in the BT/RT group; and past-month use of illicit drugs decreased by 52% in the BI group and 60% in the BT/RT group.
*SAMHSA=Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
†AUDIT=Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test.