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About The Community Guide

The Guide to Community Preventive Services (The Community Guide) is a collection of evidence-based findings of the Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF). It is a resource to help you select interventions to improve health and prevent disease in your state, community, community organization, business, healthcare organization, or school.

Community Guide reviews are designed to answer three questions:

  1. What has worked for others and how well?
  2. What might this intervention approach cost, and what am I likely to achieve through my investment?
  3. What are the evidence gaps?

The CPSTF issues findings based on systematic reviews of effectiveness and economic evidence that are conducted with a methodology developed by the Community Guide Branch.

The CPSTF reviews intervention approaches across a wide range of health topics. The interventions are applicable to groups, communities, or other populations and include strategies such as healthcare system changes, public laws, workplace and school programs and policies, and community-based programs.

All of the intervention approaches are intended to improve health directly; prevent or reduce risky behaviors, disease, injuries, complications, or detrimental environmental or social factors; or promote healthy behaviors and environments.

The CPSTF was established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in 1996 to develop guidance on which community-based health promotion and disease prevention intervention approaches work and which do not work, based on available scientific evidence. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the DHHS agency that provides the CPSTF with technical and administrative support.


image of flyerDownload the flyer pdf icon [PDF - 353 kB]

Use this quick-read description of the Community Guide as a handout for presentations or as a stand-alone piece for exhibits, webinars, meetings, and conferences. [Two pages, designed to print front-and-back, head-to-head in color, on white 8.5" x 11" paper]


For more information
Truman BI, Smith-Akin CK, Hinman AR, et al. Developing the Guide to Community Preventive Services - Overview and Rationale [PDF - 191 kB]. Am J Prev Med. 2000; 18 (1S) :18-26.