Evidence-Based Programs (EBPs) are interventions that have been found to be effective based on the results of rigorous evaluations. Ultimately, when choosing an intervention we want to know first and foremost if it will work. In other words, is the program likely to do what we hope it will do? Choosing a program that has been scientifically evaluated to determine its effectiveness is one way to increase the likelihood of good results. The following definitions can help you navigate through the different kinds of prevention programs that are out there:
Evidence Based, Promising, Best and Emerging Practices Defined
- Evidence-Based Practices are strategies, activities, or approaches which have been shown through scientific research and evaluation to be effective at preventing and/or delaying an unwanted outcome. The SAMSHA National Registry of Evidence Based Programs and Practices has a searchable database that can be used to find EBPs: http://www.nrepp.samhsa.gov.
- Best Practices are programs, strategies, or approaches that have resulted from a rigorous process of peer review and evaluation that indicates effectiveness in improving prevention outcomes for a target population.
- Promising Practices are programs, strategies, or approaches that have some scientific research or data showing their effectiveness in delaying an unwanted outcome, but do not have enough evidence to support generalizable conclusions.
- Emerging Practices are programs, strategies or approaches which incorporate the philosophy, values, characteristics, and indicators of other positive/effective prevention interventions. They are based on guidelines, protocols, standards, or preferred practice patterns that have been proven to lead to effective public health outcomes. They also incorporate a process of continual quality improvement.
Using an EBP increases the chance that the program will work as intended. However, there is no one-size-fits-all program. The best fit intervention is one that is relevant to the community logic model and appropriate to the community’s needs, resources, and readiness to act.
Most, if not all, EBPs are developed based on research and theory about what program components are likely to work for the targeted population. To ensure successful outcomes, it is often important to implement the program with fidelity, making sure to include all the core components of the program during implementation. If you need to adapt the program to fit local conditions or meet specific needs, these changes should be made carefully and systematically, based on a thorough understanding of the program theory and core components.
The programs accessed through the Interventions page are a part of the growing number of EBPs that have been implemented in Hawai‘i in the past few years. Each EBP is presented with an overview of programmatic information and local implementation history based on publicly available online and printed sources, such as the federal EBP registries, peer-review journals, and reports. The list is not exhaustive of all EBPs implemented in Hawai‘i and does not constitute an endorsement or approval.