Substance Use Screening Protocol: Implementation of a system for patients with cancer

Amanda Choflet, Laura Hoofring, Zhi Cheng, Lisa Katulis, Amol Narang, Susan Appling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Substance use by patients with a cancer diagnosis may have a detrimental effect on short-and long-term outcomes. Screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) has been recommended for all patients in primary care and emergency medicine. OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this quality improvement project was to train clinical providers and to implement an effective SBIRT program in a radiation oncology clinic in a comprehensive cancer center. METHODS: An interprofessional task force devel-oped a staff training protocol that incorporated oncology-specific content. The team then piloted an SBIRT program in the outpatient clinic. FINDINGS: Staff training results were mixed, with only a few evaluation items showing significant improvement. Despite these results, staff training and the implementation of an SBIRT may be valuable in improving substance use screening in this vulnerable population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)554-560
Number of pages7
JournalClinical journal of oncology nursing
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2020


  • Brief intervention
  • Cancer
  • Referral to therapy
  • Screening
  • Substance use

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Oncology(nursing)


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