Substance use problems: When to refer to a specialist
Consider specialist referral in these situations:
- Diagnostic clarification is required.
- The severity or complexity of the presentation is beyond your expertise.
- The patient requires support and services provided by a specialized centre (e.g., for pregnant women, trauma victims, youth).
- The patient has multiple problems that could benefit from multidisciplinary case management
- The patient has only a partial response or no response to treatment.
Alcohol-use disorders: diagnosis, assessment and management of harmful drinking and alcohol dependence (NICE guideline CG115, 2011)
BC Guidelines: Problem Drinking
Canadian Guideline for Safe and Effective Use of Opioids for Chronic Non-Cancer Pain (National Opioid Use Guideline Group (NOUGG), 2010)
Canadian Smoking Cessation Clinical Practice Guideline (CAN ADAPTT, 2011)
Supporting smoking cessation: a guide for health professionals (Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, 2011, 2014)