Brief Intervention in Action

SOC FRAMES MIAlthough the brief intervention component of SBIRT can often be the most difficult to implement in practice. This partly because it hinges on your ability to connect with your patient interpersonally, to communicate clearly and effectively with him or her, and to establish a rapport that can lead to personal reflection and behavioral change.

Change can be difficult for some patient to achieve, maybe even consider. Understanding that there exist “stages” of readiness for change can help you identify where your patient is in relation to changing their behavior. For those patients who are ready for change or are actively involved in changing behavior, little intervention beyond advices and goal-setting may be necessary.

But for those patients who are resistant to change, it can be helpful to use principles from Motivational Interviewing to help your patient explore and resolve ambivalence to facilitate change. So what does exploring ambivalence when talking to patients even mean, and how do you do it? Luckily, there are many practical patient communication tools and techniques that help you translate these principles into practice. One of these tools is the FRAMES technique which is covered in an upcoming section.