SPF Overview

SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) is a model that guides the selection, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based, culturally appropriate, sustainable interventions addressing substance abuse. The SPF comprises five key steps:

  • SPF Step 1: Assessment involves gathering and examining data about opioid misuse and related problems, conditions, and consequences in the community
  • SPF Step 2: Capacity Building helps communities acquire the needed resources and readiness to support their chosen strategies
  • SPF Step 3: Strategic Planning focuses the energy of your group by ensuring that you are working toward the same goals, and allows you to assess and adjust your programmatic direction as needed
  • SPF Step 4: Implementation involves creating a written action plan that details how a strategy will be implemented, who the implementers are, what training and consultation needs they will have, and what administrative support is required for implementation
  • SPF Step 5: Evaluation involves collecting and analyzing information about program activities, characteristics, and outcomes; you’ll also evaluate the entire five-step process to show how each step of the SPF connects to the steps around it

Although presented here as a list of sequential steps, the steps are not entirely linear; there is substantial overlap among the five components.

In addition, two cross-cutting themes—cultural competence and sustainability—must be addressed throughout each of the five steps:

  • All activities within each step should be completed in a culturally competent manner that is responsive to the cultural contexts of the community and includes community members. Cultural competence requires attention to both cultural and linguistic competence. The cultural competence component of the SPF model encompasses both concepts.
  • All activities within each step should be as sustainable as possible, so that the cycle of assessment, capacity building, strategy planning, implementation, and evaluation can be repeated as communities change and new substance abuse prevention priorities develop

The SPF provides an overarching framework and series of processes to develop a data-driven plan for substance abuse prevention that incorporates a sustainable, culturally competent, capacity-building approach to the implementation of evidence-based programs and interventions.