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Community Based Prevention

Primary prevention focuses on individuals, families and the community as a whole to prevent the initiation of substance use or to delay the onset of use. Prevention of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs is focused on availability, access, community norms and regulations. The environmental approach is to ensure that access is reduced, attitudes, beliefs and perceptions are changed, policies are strengthened and enforcement is increased.


Policy Change local bylaws and ordinances that affect substance use rates in communities by working with local boards of health, commissions and councils.

Education/Awareness Enhance skills, share information and increase knowledge through community forums, workshops and social marketing campaigns.

Join a local coalition — a coalition is a group or individuals that join forces for a common cause/interest.


Malden — (781) 397-7049 Malden Board of Health 

Medford — (781) 393-2449 Team Medford

Melrose — (781) 979-4128 Melrose Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition

Reading — (781) 942-6793 Reading Coalition Against Substance Abuse

Stoneham — (781) 850-0610 Stoneham Substance Abuse Coalition

Wakefield — (339) 219-4034 Wakefield Unified Prevention

Winchester- Winchester Coalition for a Safer Community

MOAR – Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery Tel: 617-423-6627 Toll free: 1-877-423-6627 To organize recovering individuals, families and friends into a collective voice to educate the public about the value of recovery from alcohol and other addictions


SBIRT- Screening Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment: SBIRT is a comprehensive, integrated, public health approach to give the skills necessary to discuss behavior change with patients. This approach is often used in primary care centers, hospital emergency rooms, trauma centers, and other community settings.


Screening: Quickly assesses the severity of substance use and identifies the appropriate level of treatment.


Brief intervention: Focuses on increasing insight and awareness regarding substance use and motivation toward behavioral change.

Referral to Treatment: Provides those identified as needing more extensive treatment with access to specialty care.

CRAFFT-Car, Relax, Alone, Forget, Friends, Trouble: A screening tool for youth under 21 to assess the risk of alcohol and other drug use. The tool will determine whether further assessment is needed.  The model below is for a self administered assessment. In the past 12 months, did you; take more than a few sips of alcohol, smoke any marijuana, use anything else to get high?

  • C – Have you ridden in a CAR driven by someone who was "high" or had been using alcohol or drugs?

  • R  – Do you ever use alcohol/drugs to RELAX, feel better about yourself, or fit in?

  •  – Do you ever use alcohol/drugs while you are by yourself, ALONE?

  • F –  Do you ever FORGET things you did while you were using alcohol or drugs?

  • F  – Do your family or FRIENDS ever tell you that you should cut down on your drinking or drug use?

  • T  – Have you gotten into TROUBLE while you were using alcohol or drugs?

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