Youth Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment is an initiative by the National Council for Behavioral Health with funding from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation to disseminate and support the advancement of SBIRT for youth within primary care practices. How do we do this?

  • Disseminate the Improving Adolescent Health: Facilitating Change for Excellence in SBIRT change package to a national primary care audience.
  • Provide training and technical assistance that facilitates the development of knowledge and skills among primary care practices and associations to improve access to youth SBIRT implementation support.
  • Advocate for policies that support and sustain youth SBIRT within primary care.

Youth Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (YSBIRT) is designed to reduce the effects of youth substance use by equipping primary care and behavioral health providers with the tools they need to prevent it. The team at the National Council of Behavioral Health offers this comprehensive package of tools, training, and technical support to assist providers in adopting the innovative and effective practice of early intervention.

Meet the Team

Aaron Williams, M.A.
Senior Director, Training and TA for Substance Use

Aaron Williams serves as an SBIRT practice coach and expert trainer for the YSBIRT project. He has more than 16 years of experience providing training and technical assistance in the field of behavioral health services, with an emphasis on substance use treatment and prevention, workforce development, and the implementation of evidence-based-practices in clinical settings. Aaronhas written and contributed to numerous articles and reports on: drugs of abuse, primary care and substance abuse integration, SBIRT, mental health and primary care integration, workforce development of behavioral health providers, and the implementation of medication assistant treatment services.

Pam Pietruszewski, M.A.
Integrated Health Consultant

Pam Pietruszewiski serves as an SBIRT practice coach and expert trainer for the YSBIRT project. She specializes in Motivational Interviewing (MI) and SBIRT. She has more than 20 years’ experience designing and implementing programs to integrate behavioral health and primary care services. She is listed in the National Registry of SBIRT Trainers from the Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network established by SAMHSA and has published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology in Medical Settings, American Journal of Managed Care, Mental Health Family Medicine, Annals of Family Medicine, Psychiatric Services and the Journal of Biomedical Informatics. She holds a master’s degree in Counseling and Psychological Services from St. Mary’s University in Minnesota.

Lindsi DeSorrento, M.P.H, P.M.P
Director, Healthcare Transformation

Lindsi serves as the project director for YSBIRT. She is a behavioral health and public health professional with more than 10 years of experience managing federal grants and contracts and foundation grants, delivering technical assistance programs, and providing direct behavioral health services to the community. In her role she directs several projects that address substance use, mental health, policy, practice, and clinical issues. Prior to joining the National Council, Lindsi held various direct services positions as a caseworker in therapeutic foster care, child protective services, and rehabilitation support services for adults with serious mental illness.

Flannery Peterson, M.P.H., P.M.P.
Senior Project Manager

Flannery Peterson serves as the project manager for YSBIRT. She brings more than 10 years of public health and project management experience. She currently leads a diverse portfolio of practice improvement projects at the National Council that improves access to care for behavioral health and addiction services providers. Prior to joining the National Council, Flannery worked in the public health and non-profit association field and served as an AmeriCorps member where she worked as an HIV/AIDS youth prevention specialist for at-risk youth.

Stephanie Swanson
Project Coordinator

Stephanie Swanson serves as the project coordinator for YSBIRT. She is a public health professional with a focus on increasing access to youth mental health supports, adolescent substance use prevention, addiction treatment, and recovery. Stephanie has a robust background in project, budget, and training management to support addiction treatment professionals, primary care physicans, and community-based organizations through operational and clinical technical assistance. Prior to joining the National Council, Stephanie worked in education and health advocacy.

National Council for Behavioral Health

The National Council for Behavioral Health is the unifying voice of America’s health care organizations that deliver mental health and addictions treatment and services. Together with our 3,326 member organizations serving over 10 million adults, children and families living with mental illnesses and addictions, the National Council is committed to all Americans having access to comprehensive, high-quality care that affords every opportunity for recovery. The National Council introduced Mental Health First Aid USA and more than 2 million Americans have been trained.

Our mission is to ensure all Americans have access to comprehensive, high-quality behavioral health care that affords every opportunity for recovery.

A not-for-profit 501(c) association, the National Council accomplishes our mission through:

  • Advocating on Capitol Hill for policies that ensure people living with mental illness and addiction can access comprehensive health care services.
  • Leading state-of-the-science education, practice improvement, and consulting to drive integrated care and ensure services are efficient and effective.
  • Coordinating Mental Health First Aid across the U.S.
  • Offering NatCon, the annual National Council for Behavioral Health Conference featuring the best in leadership, organizational development, and excellence in mental health and addictions practice.