Conducting SBIRT Virtually


Conducting SBIRT Virtually

As with providing any psychological service through virtual methods, specific considerations must be taken when conducting SBIRT virtually.

First and foremost, a provider should always confirm the location and contact information of the youth they are working with in order to reconnect, if disconnected, and summon emergency services if necessary. Additionally, when considering conducting SBIRT virtually, there are specific considerations for each component of SBIRT that should be taken into account. For screening, the first consideration that must be taken is how to ensure that your screening procedures are HIPAA compliant.

For brief intervention, it can be helpful to provide the youth with additional resources to bolster and support their commitment to reduce substance use. One of the most easily accessed resources is psychoeducational apps, which youth can easily download onto their phones.

For referral to treatment, the list of referral sources should include providers who conduct telemental health services.

Finally, facilitating a warm handoff, virtually, is still an important step.

Video Transcript

Infographic: Conducting SBIRT Virtually

For more information, please enroll in our eLearning course, Introduction to Adolescent SBIRT from a Prevention Perspective on


The Introduction to Adolescent SBIRT from a Prevention Perspective e-learning course provides an overview of the Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) protocol for use with adolescents (ages 9 to 22). The content of this e-learning course was designed for prevention professionals, school personnel, social workers, addictions counselors, and other non-medical professionals working with adolescents and young adults, in HHS Region 8. Professionals working and residing outside of HHS Region 8 states are welcome to take this course, however, the data sections in the course are specific to HHS Region 8 states (CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY).


Other resources from the Introduction to Adolescent SBIRT from a Prevention Perspective e-learning course 


Conducting SBIRT Virtually


Short Videos: 

SBIRT Research with Adolescents

Protecting the Adolescent Brain

Why SBIRT is Important

Referral to Treatment

SBIRT Implementation




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