Although the terms are sometimes used interchangeably, screening and assessment are different processes in the field of addiction treatment. Both relate to determining need and are in a sense part of a continuum of evaluation. In general, screening is used to determine whether or not a Raleigh Durham patient needs addiction treatment, and assessment helps determine what type of treatment is indicated.
Screening for Addiction Issues
Sometimes Raleigh Durham addicts know that they need addiction treatment. Sometimes, however, they are unaware or in denial. For these people, screening is necessary. Screening can be done by a government body (when someone is arrested for driving while intoxicated, for example) or by other professionals, such as doctors in primary treatment or emergency room settings.
Assessing Individual Treatment Needs
Once Raleigh Durham patients have been screened, assessing their needs is very important for formulating a treatment plan. A thorough assessment should be done at the beginning of the treatment process, but should also be ongoing as treatment progresses and needs to change. Screening is often done by those who are not substance abuse professionals, but assessment is conducted by those with education and training in the field. An assessment can determine the following information:
- The scope and duration of the substance abuse problem
- Other medical needs and conditions
- Family history of substance abuse
- The presence and extent of co-occurring mental health disorders
- The impact of substance abuse on the patient’s functioning
- Practical needs, such as for employment, housing, and transportation
- Family and social relationship status
- Motivation for treatment
- Educational background
- Previous treatment experiences
The initial assessment generally takes a few hours. It should combine the use of standardized instruments with patient interviews. Patient family members may also be included in the interview process, especially for minors.
Screening and Assessment Instruments Available to Raleigh Durham Residents
There are a large number of standard screening and assessment instruments available. Some of the most commonly used for addictions are the Addiction Severity Index (ASI), the Substance Abuse Subtle Screening Inventory (SASSI), the Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test (MAST) and the Drug Dependence Screen (DDS). There are also instruments to determine mental health symptoms, such as the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI). Readiness for treatment may be partially determined by instruments such as the Stages of Change Readiness and Treatment Eagerness Scale (SOCRATES) and the University of Rhode Island Change Assessment Scale (URICA).
Addiction Help for Raleigh Durham Residents
If you live in Raleigh Durham and need addiction treatment, call our toll-free helpline and let our counselors discuss the issue with you. We can help you find the answers to your questions and can even check your insurance coverage if you wish. Our number is toll free, and we are available 24 hours a day, so don’t wait and wonder any longer. Call today.