Recognizing the prevalence of substance use and misuse among adolescents, OASAS partnered with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (NYC DOHMH) on a pilot study that aimed to determine the extent to which SBIRT could be integrated and institutionalized in the School-Based Health Center (SBHC) setting.

Between January and May of 2012, a sample of 400 students completed substance use screens, over 30 brief interventions were conducted, and eight referrals to treatment were provided. Pilot data also indicated that both staff and students were accepting of the service and that SBIRT helped standardize the sites’ informal substance abuse screening, making identifying at-risk students more efficient with little added time and effort required. Challenges identified by OASAS and SBHC staff included getting students to return for follow-up brief intervention sessions, the need for dedicated staff to provide support and maintain communication, and maintaining a standardized protocol across multiple sites served by different staff.


Gerry King, MPA, LMSW is the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) Bureau of Prevention’s Training and Technical Assistance supervisor. He has worked for NYS OASAS for 25+ years. Prior to coming to OASAS he worked as a supervisor in an alcoholism outpatient clinic and in private practice. He is a member of the OASAS Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) workgroup and is an OASAS certified SBIRT and “Teen Intervene” trainer. He received his BA in Sociology from Siena College in 1975, an MA in Counseling Psychology from Assumption College in 1979, an MSW from SUNY-Albany in 1983 and MPA from SUNY-Albany in 1994.

Brett Harris, DrPH, is Project Evaluator of the federally funded New York State SBIRT (NYSBIRT) cooperative agreement which delivers SBIRT in Sexually Transmitted Disease clinics and Tuberculosis Chest Centers in New York City and emergency departments and a federally qualified health center in Jefferson County near Fort Drum. She has worked at the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) Research and Development Unit for over four years and, besides her work on NYSBIRT, she is an integral team member for SBIRT in school-based health centers (SBHCs). Brett recently defended her dissertation on factors that facilitate and impede the adoption and implementation of SBIRT in SBHCs and received her Dr PH from the University at Albany. She received her Master of Public Health from the University at Albany in 2008 and her Bachelor of Science in Human Development with concentrations in Adolescents and Social Policy from Cornell University in 2006.

Shirley DeStafeno, MS is the Project Manager of the New York Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (NYSBIRT I) grant for NYS Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS). She has been a Project Manager and Evaluator for several federally-funded grants for over twenty-five years, with prior experience in clinical services and management information systems. She is an OASAS-certified Motivational Interviewing Trainer. In her previous role, she was the Project Evaluator for FASD Initiative Project, Project CHOICES, she developed and conducted the training and Motivational Interviewing sessions.

In 1999, she came to New York to become the Project Manager for the NYS TOPPS II, a CSAT grant studying patient outcomes that included 22 treatment programs and 900 clients. From 2002 to 2006, she was the evaluator for two Family Dependency Treatment Courts through a CSAT grant. Prior to coming to New York, she was the Project Manager for the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Statewide Needs Assessment Project. She was the Project Evaluator for the Baltimore Target Cities Project that used a multi-project format that included treatment and services across settings, community health centers, and AOD facilities. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degrees from the College of St. Rose (Albany, NY), a Master of Arts from Hood College (Frederick, Maryland), and an Advanced Certificate from Georgetown University in Organizational Development..

Additional Resources

PowerPoint Slides