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What’s a Drug Health Screening Assessment?

by | Last updated May 12, 2021 at 11:09AM | Published on May 12, 2021 | Rehab Programs

Woman holding clipboard with drug test

When you start the admissions process to enter a rehab center, you’ll likely follow a set of tests to understand your condition. Part of this process includes completing a drug health screening assessment. This is used to validate the risk level of a substance use disorder. Clinicians use these health screening tests to get an overall idea of someone’s struggle with addiction. 

Evidence-based Screening Tools & Assessments

Currently, there are various evidence-based screening tools available for clinicians and other healthcare professionals to help recognize and pinpoint a substance use disorder. These health screening tests are available in:

  • Pain management settings
  • Dental settings
  • Family medicine settings
  • Pediatric medicine settings

Health Screenings for Adolescents

Because adolescent’s behaviors around substance use are different, there are specific tools out there that help clinicians, parents, and other concerned family members understand the impact of the teen’s substance use. 

Tool Substance Type Administration
Screening to Brief Intervention (S2BI) Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Brief Screener for Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs (BSTAD) Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Tobacco, Alcohol, Prescription Medication, and Other Substance Use (TAPS) Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention for Youth Alcohol Clinician-administered


CRAFFT Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Drug Abuse Screen Test (DAST-20) Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention for Youth (NIAAA) Alcohol Clinician-administered

Health Screenings for Adults

While tools for adults can be easier to use, adults also know how to disguise the symptoms and struggles of their substance use better. This makes it extra challenging for clinicians and addiction specialists to understand the full extent of someone’s substance use. 

Tool Substance Type Administration
Tobacco, Alcohol, Prescription Medication, and Other Substance Use (TAPS) Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
NIDA Drug Use Screening Tool (NMASSIST) Alcohol & Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered
Opioid Risk Tool Drugs Self-administered
Helping Patients Who Drink Too Much Alcohol Clinician-administered


Drug Abuse Screen Test (DAST-10) Drugs Self-administered & Clinician-administered


Other evidence-based assessment tools:

Why Are Drug Health Screening Assessments Important?

One would think that all addiction treatment centers conduct health screening assessments in their admission process. However, you’d be surprised how many don’t. Drug health screenings and assessments help therapists develop tailored addiction treatment plans that address a person’s unique qualities. 

Companies also use these tools to provide a drug-free workplace. In this case, blood tests and urine samples are collected to detect any drug and alcohol that could be a warning sign of substance abuse. Employee drug testing can occur before hiring someone or sporadically to see addiction problems; this is common in healthcare and government job environments. 

Drug and health screening tests also help rehab centers understand the types of drugs someone is using and whether or not they’re using prescription drugs at the moment. In the end, by tapping into these resources, clinicians can offer a better and more personalized approach to treatment that yields better long-term results. 

Does Lighthouse Recovery Institute Use Screening Tests?

Yes. Our drug and health screening assessment does not disqualify a potential patient. Instead, it helps our therapists understand the level of care someone will need based on their addiction severity.

Our admission process involves an initial phone call screening to gather basic information. After this, we move to a more comprehensive screening process with our therapists, clinicians, and addiction specialists. Finally, once a patient gets ready to enter our rehab center, we complete total health and physical assessment to understand any medical issues and other components that will play a role in determining the course of detox and other programs. 

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, contact our admission office today to start our complimentary and confidential drug health screening and assessment. 

Lighthouse Editorial Team

Lighthouse Editorial Team

Our editorial team includes content experts that contribute to Lighthouse Recovery Institute’s blog. Editors and medical experts review our blogs for accuracy and relevance. We consistently monitor the latest research from SAMHSA and NIDA to provide you with the most comprehensive addiction-related content.
Medical Disclaimer:

Lighthouse Recovery Institute aims to improve the quality of life for anyone struggling with substance use or mental health disorder. We provide fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options, and their outcomes. The material we publish is researched, cited, edited, and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide in our posts is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It should never be used in place of the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider.

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