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Washington Screening, Brief Interventions, and Referrals to Treatment (WASBIRT-PCI) Project

In 2003, Washington State received a five-year grant to implement SBIRT in nine emergency departments statewide. A total of 106,464 persons were screened using SBIRT during this grant period.

WASBIRT initiative findings

The key findings from the 2003-2008 WASBIRT initiative were:

  • Declines in substance use, increased abstinence, reduced anxiety and depression, increased employment, and reductions in homelessness
  • Increased admissions to chemical dependency treatment for individuals who received a brief intervention
  • Reductions in medical costs for individuals who received a brief intervention

The findings from the 2003-2008 initiative were so promising that Washington decided to expand SBIRT services.

Review the final tracking report (2009-02-11).

Grant reapplication

Washington reapplied for the SAMHSA SBIRT grant to expand SBIRT into primary care and began receiving funding for the Washington Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment Primary Care Integration (WASBIRT-PCI) Project in September 2011.

  • WASBIRT-PCI is a five-year grant from 2011-2016.
  • Washington was awarded $8,333,000 from SAMHSA over the five year period.
  • WASBIRT-PCI has partner clinics in five counties in Washington.

The goal: sustainable, reimbursable

The WASBIRT-PCI goal is to implement SBIRT into primary health and create a sustainable, reimbursable SBIRT system.

Much time has been dedicated to opening billing codes created by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and make sure the billing codes are practical for clinics. The Medicaid codes became available for use January 1, 2014.

SBIRT can be billed under Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance in the state of Washington.

Sponsoring agencies