AIM Substance Use Disorder Learning Collaborative



AIM Substance Use Disorder Learning Collaborative

In this page you will find:

  • Project Overview
  • Events/Project Calendar
  • Collaborative Documents (General and Pre-Work documents)
  • How to Submit Data
  • Resources for Hospitals
  • Additional Information about the Learning Collaborative and the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM)

Project Overview

The Colorado AIM: Substance Use Disorder (CO AIM: SUD) Learning Collaborative focuses on establishing hospital guidelines and protocols for screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) for substance use disorder (SUD) and perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) at the time of admission for birth. The Learning Collaborative is based upon the AIM Obstetric Care for Women with Opioid Use Disorder patient safety bundle.

The purpose of the collaborative is to reduce maternal deaths related to suicide and overdose, which are the two leading causes, respectively, of single-cause maternal death in Colorado according to the Colorado Maternal Mortality Prevention Program’s latest report, Maternal Mortality in Colorado, 2014 – 2016.

Contact us ( to learn more or get involved!

Events and Project Dates

  • Monthly Coaching Calls
    • Every third Thursday of the month from 1:00-2:30p.m. (MT)
    • Please register for the series. Coaching calls will take place on the following dates:
      • March 18: Introduction to QI Science for Perinatal Teams, presented by CPCQC
      • April 15: NO CALL. We encourage teams to attend all or part of the CHoSEN Spring Forum on April 15 in lieu of this month’s Coaching Call. View more info
      • May 20, 2021: Applying an Equity Lens to SBIRT in Pregnancy presented by Dr. Tricia Wright
      • June 17, 2021: Panel of Recovery Advocates with Lived Experiences of SUD During Pregnancy: Improving Patient-Centered Care, facilitated by Rewa Bailey of the Aspen Medical Center
      • July 15, 2021: Trauma-Informed Care with Dr. Helen Coons and co-presenter
      • August 19, 2021: Breastfeeding and Marijuana, presented by Drs. Erica Wymore and Maya Bunik
      • September 16, 2021: Pain Management for Cesarean Delivery, presented by Dr. Christina Wood
      • October 21, 2021: Naloxone Training, presented by Summit Stone Health Partners
      • November 18, 2021: Perinatal Mental Health with Dr. Sarah Nagle-Yang
      • December 16, 2021: Project Closeout and Celebration.
  • June 30, 8:00a.m. – 12:00p.m. (MT)
    • Learning Session #2
    • Collaborative topics to date have extensively addressed universal screening for substance use in pregnancy, brief behavioral health intervention, and referral to treatment. In Learning Session 2, we will pull these pieces together to address inpatient clinical care elements that Learning Collaborative teams should incorporate in their Labor & Delivery protocol development, including strategies and resources for support.

      • Drs. Laurie Halmo and Kaylin Klie will discuss best practices for toxicology testing and interpretation of results. Their presentation will address the importance of evidence-based protocols for testing, guidance on obtaining consent, “screening” versus confirmatory testing, and documentation.

      • How does inpatient care differ for delivering patients who have a substance use disorder? Dr. Brandi Ring will present a broad perspective to address unique clinical considerations for patients with SUD. She will highlight initiation of MAT, general patient care, common comorbidities, and pain management plans. Dr. Ring will also provide a brief overview of a new resource: CO’s CURE Obstetrics and Gynecology 2020 Opioid Prescribing and Treatment Guidelines.
      • Throughout the Learning Session, we will hold Team Time for participating hospitals to update each other on current progress and support peers through the sharing of successful strategies for improvement.
    • Recordings: 
    • View slides from Learning Session #2
  • September 16, 1:00p.m. – 2:30p.m. (MT)
    • Monthly Coaching Call
    • Topic: Pain Management on L&D for Patients With and Without SUD, presented by Dr. Cristina Wood, OB Anesthesiologist
    • Click here to register.
  • December 16, 2021 1:00p.m. – 2:30p.m. (MT)
    • Project Closeout and Celebration

Collaborative Team Resources

General Collaborative Documents:

  • Project Guide – This document provides an overview of the Collaborative, outlines steps for getting started, and contains checklists that walk teams through what needs to be done, when, and how for each project period.
  • Change Package– This document lays out the evidence-based change concepts that will help collaborative teams achieve this year’s goals.
  • Team Resources Folder – This folder contains a compilation of local, state, and national resources related to screening, treating, and referring perinatal patients for SUD or PMADs.

Pre-Work Tools:

Participating teams should complete and share these documents with by April 2.

Guidance for these documents, including templates, examples, and more, are provided under the Pre-Work Resources subfolder of your Team Resources Folder, as well as in the attachments of your Project Guide!

Project Charter: provides a rationale + roadmap for the team’s improvement work that can be used to clarify thinking about what needs to be done and why

Storyboard: tells your team’s story – who you are, current processes and challenges related to SUD, aspirations for the project, and strengths/expertise that you would be willing to share with other teams. This includes instructions on how to make your Process Flow Diagram.

30-60-90 Plan: helps your team decide where to start and what you want to accomplish in the first 3 months. Call it the “where should we start” plan.

Data Collection

Data must be submitted in REDCap by the last day of each month. Contact with the full name and email address of staff members who need access to REDCap.

Submit data to REDCap here

Hospital Data Collection Form (required, monthly)

CO AIM: SUD Patient Data Sheet (optional, quarterly)

Monthly data submissions are due on the last day of each month:

  • April 30
  • May 31
  • June 30
  • July 31
  • August 31
  • September 30
  • October 31
  • November 30
  • December 31

If you are submitting optional patient-level data, complete the form on the last day of each quarter:

  • June 30
  • September 30
  • December 31

Resources for Hospitals

All resources below, and more, can be found in the Team Resources folder! Have a resource to suggest, or can’t find what you’re looking for? Please email us at


Brief Intervention:

Referral to Treatment:

Clinical Tools and Protocols

Additional Information about the Learning Collaborative and the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM)

Substance Use Disorder and Birth Hospitalization

When a pregnant person is admitted to the hospital for birth, a whirlwind of activity ensues. With everything that happens during this time, patients with substance use disorders (SUD) often go unidentified. When SUD is identified at any point in the pregnancy, delivery, or postpartum, the most common response is for the care team’s attention to turn toward the infant. However, it is equally critical that clinical teams optimize obstetric care for the birthing patient. Ideally, attention will be on the mother-infant dyad.

Hospital labor and delivery teams are in a unique position to ensure that no birth parent with SUD or perinatal mental health disorders falls under the radar or is left untreated.

About the CO AIM: SUD Learning Collaborative

This community of practice will guide teams in implementation of best practices for universal screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) for substance use and mental health conditions among patients admitted for birth.

Participating teams will implement the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health’s (AIM) Obstetric Care for Women with Opioid Use Disorder patient safety bundle, with an emphasis on universal screening at admission for birth, and implementation of clinical pathways to optimize maternal care.

The high rate of co-occurrence of mental, anxiety, and substance use disorders is well documented, and incorporating maternal mental health into this project is a natural fit to address the two leading causes of maternal death in Colorado. Similarly, this project will include all substances, rather than only opioids, where applicable.

There are seemingly infinite ways to address the challenges of maternal mental health and substance use disorders in prenatal care. Hospital teams will be supported in addressing their unique needs.

Key opportunity areas for improvement addressed through this collaborative include:

  • Development and implementation of universal screening protocols using validated tools
  • Outlining best practices for implementing patient-centered, trauma-informed care
  • Conducting staff and provider training in reducing stigma and implicit bias
  • Connecting hospital teams with outpatient resources to ensure continuity of care after discharge

About the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health

The Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM) is a joint partnership of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Health and Resources Services Administration Maternal-Child Health Bureau (HRSA-MCHB). AIM publishes evidence-based Patient Safety Bundles[1] that frame best practice guidance around hospital:

  • Readiness

Do providers and hospital staff have the tools, resources, and education needed to provide optimal care for patients? Do families have access to the information and resources needed to help them understand their diagnosis and participate in their care?

  • Recognition & prevention

Are there protocols in place to guide best practices for screening and morbidity prevention, and are hospital systems structured to standardize and simplify adherence to these protocols?

  • Response

Do providers have the tools and resources, as well as system supports, to respond in the event of a diagnosis or clinical emergency?

  • Reporting & systems learning

What systems are in place to assess the success of hospital interventions? Do hospitals have standardized processes to review case data and adapt based on patient outcomes?

  • AIM is in the process of integrating “respectful care” to ensure equity and dignity is emphasized throughout all bundles.

Each bundle includes a summary of best practices, along with references for more information. See AIM’s website,, to learn more.

Ready to Make a Difference?

A steady rise in maternal mortality rates and disparities in infant mortality have increased the spotlight on the quality of care delivered by hospitals and their staff. Together, we can address these issues, improve outcomes and reduce preventable deaths in our state.

Get Involved