Addiction Intervention & Addiction Screening Tools | CASAColumbia

Addiction Prevention

Addiction Screening and Intervention

Routine screening for risky use should be conducted to identify early signs of trouble. Those who screen positive should receive a full diagnostic evaluation to determine if they have addiction or are a risky user. Those who are risky users but do not have addiction may benefit from a brief intervention, which can be an effective, low-cost approach to reducing risky use.

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Screening Tools

Screening Tools

A screening tool is used to identify people who may be using an addictive substance in risky ways and who may require an intervention or treatment. Screening tools typically include written or oral questionnaires or sometimes other tests involving blood, saliva, urine or hair samples.  

Who Conducts the Screening?

Physicians and other health professionals should routinely screen at-risk individuals for signs of addiction and risky substance use. Because not everyone sees a health care provider regularly, screening can also be conducted by trained professionals in schools and professional settings.

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Only 11% of people who need treatment for addiction involving alcohol or drugs other than nicotine receive any form of treatment.

Are You At Risk?

Get help for addiction: how to find quality treatment

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What is a Brief Intervention? 

Brief interventions offer advice, motivation or skills to help individuals reduce their substance use and avoid negative consequences. Brief interventions may be conducted in a single session or they may consist of several sessions. Brief interventions can save lives and reduce a broad range of negative health and social consequences, including accidents, sexual and other assaults, unintended pregnancies, other crimes and health problems, including addiction.

Who Conducts a Brief Intervention?

Brief interventions can be delivered by doctors, nurses, physicians’ assistants and clinical mental health counselors who have been trained to provide these services. They can be conducted face-to-face or over the phone or computer.

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More than 90% of people with addiction began smoking, drinking or using other drugs before age 18.

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Addiction Treatment

Get help for addiction from our step-by-step guide to finding quality addiction treatment.