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Advancing Primary Prevention in Human Services: Convening Findings

Publication Date
Lauren Akers, Jennifer Tippins, Susan Hauan, and Miranda Lynch-Smith

This brief highlights key themes and ideas from a Health and Human Services (HHS) Convening on Advancing Primary Prevention in Human Services in August 2022. With a particular focus on prevention of youth and family homelessness, the convening featured the perspectives of academic experts, program administrators, federal colleagues, and people with lived expertise. Discussion highlighted the opportunity for human services to shift from responding to families once they are in crisis to preventing the crisis before it occurs. This shift would center on building a national framework for delivering family supports and prevention services that prioritizes equity, elevates lived expertise, and fully incorporates a human-centered, person-first approach to promote positive long-term outcomes for individuals and families.

Key Points:

  • Focus on the root causes of adverse experiences: poverty and a lack of economic opportunity
  • Expand beyond targeting high-risk populations to universal systems and approaches
  • Design a national framework for delivering prevention services
  • Adopt a human-centered approach to service design that co-creates at all levels and stages of prevention services
  • Integrate infrastructure across program areas and sectors
  • Build a primary prevention workforce with a person-first approach to service delivery
  • Continuously improve service accessibility and effectiveness by engaging those with lived expertise
  • Support a national system for delivering prevention services
  • Engage communities to support prevention
  • Leverage evidence of effectiveness to build political will
  • Finance primary prevention services

Available Reports:

Product Type
ASPE Issue Brief
Children | Parents | Youth | Racial & Ethnic Groups | Families with Children | Low-Income Populations | Underserved Populations