SBIRT - Training

This training program is for licensed providers who seek to deliver SBIRT services in allowable settings with reimbursement from Medicaid. To become eligible to receive Medicaid reimbursement for SBIRT services, licensed providers are required to complete a one-time four hour SBIRT training. This training program meets the Medicaid requirement. For more information on provider type and allowable settings for delivering SBIRT services, please see the Medicaid description of SBIRT in the Forward Health Update. (PDF, 125 KB)

There are three parts of this training program:

  • Part 1 provides an overview of SBIRT, background on alcohol and other drugs of abuse, and reasons for delivering SBIRT in your clinical setting. 
  • Part 2 focuses on the clinical approach and requisite clinical skills for delivering SBIRT.
  • Part 3 provides information and resources regarding initial implementation of SBIRT.

Each part has several modules with run times of up to 30 minutes.  At the conclusion of most modules, you will take a brief quiz to test your knowledge. For incorrect responses, you will be directed back to the relevant training content, then you will re-take the quiz. At the conclusion of the training program, you will take a comprehensive exam. To successfully complete the training and receive the Certificate of Completion, you must complete the exam with a passing score. The Certificate of Completion will be available for print out with successful completion of the final exam.

Part 1: Introduction to SBIRT (1 Hour)


  1. What is SBIRT?
  2. Continuum of Substance Involvement
  3. Etiology for Substance Use Disorders
  4. Reasons to Implement SBIRT

A. Introduction (20 minutes)

B. Etiology for Substance Use Disorders (20 minutes)

C. Reasons to Implement SBIRT (20 minutes)

Part 2: Clinical Skills (2.5 Hours)


  1. Develop Initial Familiarity and Comfort with the SBIRT Communication Style
  2. Identify Common Screening Methods and Assessment Techniques
  3. Understand the key Elements of a Brief Intervention and Referral for Treatment
  4. Develop Initial Familiarity and Comfort with Providing Brief Interventions
  5. Practice Critical SBIRT Communication Techniques

A. The SBIRT Approach (30 minutes)

B. SBIRT Communication Style in Practice (10 minutes)

C. Screening (20 minutes)

D. Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (20 minutes)

E. Practice: Brief Intervention (30 minutes)

F. Test (30 minutes)

Part 3: Implementation: Resources & Recommendations (0.5 Hour)

This section contains tools and resources for the implementation of SBIRT.

A. Implementation Toolkit


These training materials were created by:

  • UW-Madison, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, Wisconsin Initiative to Promote Healthy Lifestyles
  • Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Division of Care and Treatment Services, Bureau of Prevention Treatment and Recovery

This work was supported by a grant from the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration.

Training Team

Produced by Paths to Employment Resource Center (PERC)
Mary Beck, Project Manager

Training Design by Employment Resources, Inc.
Theresa Kulow, Design Director
Brendan Eagan, Instructional Designer
Cesar Hinojosa, Graphic Designer
Amanda Hudson, Graphic Designer
Lisa Horton, Technical Designer
Nate Smith, Audio Production

Video by Perfect Pitch, LTD
KelsyAnne Schoenhaar, Director and Producer

Richard Brown
Mia Croyle
Laura Saunders
Wisconsin Initiative to Promote Healthy Lifestyles

Scott Caldwell
Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Ward Paxton

Last Revised: October 28, 2016