Health Provider Checklist for Adolescent and Young Adult Males

Substance Use Disorders

Methods, Tools and Resources

  • A recent report of The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University in New York recommends the following steps health care professionals should take to tackle teen substance abuse:

    • Routinely discuss the dangers of adolescent substance use with patients and their parents.
    • Conduct routine substance use screenings of adolescent patients in primary care.
    • Screen teen patients who seek urgent or emergency medical care for substance use and substance use disorders, especially those who have injuries from accidents or violent incidents, mental health problems or who show other potential signs of substance use.
    • Conduct brief interventions using established protocols—short counseling sessions directed at changing a teen’s attitudes and behavior related to substance abuse.
    • Treat or refer to specialty care. For adolescents, it is critical that the treatment provided be tailored to their age and circumstances, and that it addresses any co-occurring conditions such as anxiety or depression, ADHD or conduct disorders.
  • The CRAFFT Screening Tool 
    The CRAFFT is a behavioral health screening tool for use with children under the age of 21 and is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics' Committee on Substance Abuse for use with adolescents.
  • NIDAMED is a comprehensive Physicians' Outreach Initiative that gives medical professionals tools and resources to screen their patients for tobacco, alcohol, illicit drug, and nonmedical prescription drug use. Developed by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIDAMED resources include an online screening tool, a companion quick reference guide, and a comprehensive resource guide for clinicians.
  • CAGE AID is a commonly used, 5- question tool used to screen for drug and alcohol use.
    The CAGE Assessment is a quick questionnaire to help determine if an alcohol assessment is needed. If a person answers yes to two or more questions, a complete assessment is advised.
  • AUDIT-C is a simple 3-question screen for hazardous or harmful drinking that can stand alone or be incorporated into general health history questionnaires.
  • DAST-10 (Drug Abuse Screen Test) is a 10-item, yes/no self-report instrument that has been condensed from the 28-item DAST and should take less than 8 minutes to complete. The DAST-10 was designed to provide a brief instrument for clinical screening and treatment evaluation and can be used with adults and older youth.