Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

Strategic Prevention Framework

This section provides information and tools related to SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF), a 5-step planning process that guides the selection, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based, culturally appropriate, sustainable prevention activities. The SPF's effectiveness begins with a clear understanding of community needs and depends on the involvement of community members in all stages of the planning process.


The SPF includes these steps, guided by the principles of cultural competence and sustainability:

The SPF is designed to help states, jurisdictions, tribes, and communities build the infrastructure necessary for effective and sustainable prevention. Each step contains key milestones and products that are essential to the validity of the process. Focused on systems development, the SPF reflects a public health, or community-based, approach to delivering effective prevention.

Many grantees have developed materials related to and/or describing their assessment processes. Links to these materials are contained on their respective state, tribe, or jurisdiction pages.


Developed under the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies contract (Reference #HHSS277200800004C).