May 16, 2024

Florida: Explore the benefits of implementing SBIRT in your office

Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment for individuals with substance use disorders

To support the Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA) in its aim to reduce the impact of substance use disorders in Florida, consider implementing the SBIRT model in your office. SBIRT is a public health approach that screens, intervenes, and refers people with substance use problems or at risk of developing them. The SBIRT model is recommended as part of universal routine health care starting at age 11 and continuing throughout adulthood in pediatrics, family and internal medicine and obstetrics.

SBIRT codes are included in the AHCA Rule 59G-4.002, Provider Reimbursement Schedules and Billing Codes — scroll down to the Practitioner Fee Schedule section and select the latest document for more information.

Applicable SBIRT codes are shown in the table below:

Code Description
H0049 Alcohol and/or drug screening
H0050 Alcohol and/or drug screening, brief intervention, per 15 minutes

How it works

The phases of the SBIRT model include:

  • Screening: Very brief set of questions that identifies risk of substance use related problems
  • Brief Intervention: Feedback and education to individuals about unhealthy substance use and motivation to make healthy behavioral changes
  • Referral to Treatment: Procedures to help individuals access substance use treatment

When should I use SBIRT?

The SBIRT model should be used:

  • Upon initial contact with a new patient or routine physical examinations
  • Upon initial prenatal contact
  • When there are concerns about risky behaviors or comorbidities
  • When the patient has evidence of serious overutilization of medical, surgical, trauma or emergency services

SBIRT screening tools and tips

For a list of screening tools and tips on how to perform a brief intervention visit:

Referring a patient

To refer a patient for substance use disorder treatment:

  • Visit to search for care providers by location
  • Call the Optum® Substance Use Disorder Helpline: 1-855-780-5955
  • Email: to refer a patient for free case management and support for medical/behavioral health
  • Email to refer a patient for maternity case management (Subject: HFS Referral; please include member’s first and last name, date of birth and Medicaid ID)

Questions? We're here to help.

Connect with us through chat 24/7 in the UnitedHealthcare Provider Portal. For additional contact information, visit our Contact us page.


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