Preparing Students to Address Substance Misuse in Appalachian Culture

Screening Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is an evidence-based approach based on motivational interviewing that service providers can use to quickly and effectively screen, treat, and refer patients for substance use disorder (SAMHSA, 2016). SBIRT is gaining widespread use in the helping professions because it is also an effective way to work with individuals at risk of substance misuse. Despite its popularity, more research is needed to produce training programs that are culturally sensitive to the clients served, including individuals living in Appalachian communities. Since 2015, a research team has been measuring SBIRT training effectiveness in health service provider programs in Southwest Virginia. The pieces of training include a supervised practice session in a simulation lab and during which students are evaluated on their ability to implement SBIRT with a standardized client.

The goal of this roundtable is to work collaboratively with attendees to gain a better understanding of how to culturally adapt the simulation lab script for Appalachian populations. The presenters will provide a brief overview of SBIRT and distribute a copy of the current simulation lab script. Attendees will be invited to provide feedback on the script and offer how to adapt the script to better represent clients seen by Appalachian health service providers. Attendees will also be encouraged to share unique experiences while working in Appalachian communities and how they managed them – especially when in stark contrast to their training environment experiences. Information collected will be analyzed and made available to attendees after analysis.