Prevention and Behavioral Health Promotion

Texas' comprehensive prevention and behavioral health promotion approach includes prevention activities and services in many settings directed at people who have not been determined to require treatment for a substance use disorder. Our program also includes promotion strategies that enable people to “increase control over, and to improve, their health,” as outlined by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Spectrum of Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral interventions.

Grantees providing prevention and behavioral health promotion services must follow Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's Strategic Prevention Framework model as a guide to assist in planning and implementing prevention strategies, programs, and related activities.

The Health and Human Services Commission's Medical and Social Services Division–Behavioral Health Services section funds more than 200 school- and community-based programs statewide to address consequences and problem behaviors related to the state's four prevention priorities: underage alcohol use, underage tobacco and nicotine products use, marijuana and other cannabinoid use, prescription drug misuse, and the use and misuse of other drugs and substances. The Prevention and Behavioral Health Promotion unit offers five individual program types:

  • Community Coalition Partnerships engage and mobilize various sectors of the community to implement evidence-based environmental strategies with a primary focus on changing policies and influencing social norms related to substance use and misuse.
  • Prevention Resource Centers increase the capacity of the statewide prevention and behavioral health promotion system by enhancing community collaboration, increasing community awareness and readiness, providing information and resources on substance use and related behavioral health data, supporting professional development of the prevention workforce, and providing resources for evaluation activities within each service region. Prevention Resource Centers also support the federal Synar requirement by conducting voluntary tobacco retail compliance checks throughout the state to help reduce youth access to tobacco and other nicotine products.
  • Youth Prevention Indicated programs address people because of initiative behaviors and related risk factors that place them at an elevated risk for substance use and misuse. While the target population might show early signs of substance use and misuse, indicated services are not designed for people with a diagnosable substance use disorder.
  • Youth Prevention Selective programs address specific subgroups of the general population known to have risk factors that increase the likelihood of substance use and misuse.
  • Youth Prevention Universal programs address the general public or subgroups with average probability of developing a substance use disorder, risk or condition.

The primary strategy and intervention employed by the Youth Prevention Programs is the delivery of evidence-based curricula, recognized by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration and approved by HHSC. Prevention contractors deliver one of the nine HHSC-approved evidence-based prevention curricula:

  • All Stars
  • Curriculum-Based Support Group Program
  • Life Skills Training
  • Positive Action
  • Project Toward No Drug Abuse
  • Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14
  • Strengthening Families Program: 7-17: 10-session curriculum
  • Strengthening Families Program: 6-16: 14-session curriculum
  • Too Good for Drugs

Prevention and Behavioral Health Program Guide – Updated 2023

For contract-specific requirements such as quarterly and yearly goals for performance measures, target populations, and required evidence-based curriculum, the contractor must refer to the Prevention and Behavioral Health Promotion Program Guide (PDF) and the statements of work (specified for each of their programs' contracts).