Ohio Receives Substance Abuse Screening Grant

The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS) has been awarded a five-year, $10 million ($2 million per year) cooperative agreement from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for a statewide Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral for Treatment (SBIRT) initiative.

Designed to reduce morbidity and mortality of alcohol and drug use, the federally-funded program stresses early intervention methodologies that rely on the integration of medical and behavioral health approaches. SBIRT strategies include: 1) training of physicians and other medical personnel in substance abuse screening, motivational interviewing and cultural competency, 2) using health information technology to improve the continuity of care, and 3) employing health navigators.

The OOA wrote a letter of support for the SBIRT grant. David D. Goldberg, DO, OOA past president and Medical Director of the Ohio Physicians Health Program, will serve on the program’s steering committee. OhioMHAS is a consolidation of the former departments of Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services and Mental Health. The cabinet-level agency change was part of the state budget bill.

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