NIH: Office of Disease Prevention


Healthy People 2020

In partnership with the HHS Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP), ODP participates in the development of the Healthy People initiative, a comprehensive set of disease prevention and health promotion objectives for the nation to achieve over the next decade. Created by scientists both inside and outside of government, Healthy People identifies a wide range of public health priorities and specific, measurable objectives. A smaller set of Healthy People 2020 objectives, called Leading Health Indicators, has been selected to communicate high-priority health issues and actions that can be taken to address them. In collaboration with ODPHP and other partner organizations, ODP provides advice on numerous Healthy People activities to ensure that agency priorities are appropriately represented. ODP staff also serve on the Federal Interagency Workgroup, the principal advisory body for the overall development and implementation of the Healthy People initiative. Learn more about Healthy People and the Leading Health Indicators.

The Healthy People 2020 Midcourse Review provides a snapshot of objective progress toward meeting targets halfway through the 10-year initiative, providing a roadmap for the second half of the decade. This 820-page report provides detailed progress and health disparities data, as available, for over 1,200 objectives.

National Prevention Strategy

The National Prevention Strategy is a comprehensive plan that will help increase the number of Americans who are healthy at every stage of life. Created by the National Prevention, Health Promotion, and Public Health Council in consultation with the public and an advisory group of outside experts, the Strategy recognizes that good health comes not just from receiving quality medical care, but also from stopping disease before it starts. Called for by the Affordable Care Act, the strategy provides evidence-based recommendations that are fundamental to improving the Nation’s health through the active engagement of all sectors of society. ODP represents the NIH on the HHS Intradepartmental Workgroup. This workgroup is led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to coordinate the input of federal agencies on activities related to the National Prevention Strategy. ODP is charged with identifying NIH efforts that support the strategic directions and the priority areas of the Strategy.

National Prevention Council Action Plan

As a way to continue this commitment to increase awareness of the value of prevention across multiple sectors, the National Prevention Council Action plan was developed. This action plan highlights the important contributions that each member department of the Council is making to ensure the health, well-being, and resilience of the American people. This plan demonstrates how these departments are implementing prevention efforts, in line with their respective missions, to achieve the goal of the National Prevention Strategy. Read the National Prevention Council Action Plan.

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force External Website Policy

Coordinated by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force External Website Policy (USPSTF) is an independent panel of non-federal experts in prevention and evidence-based medicine that works to improve the health of all Americans by making evidence-based recommendations about clinical preventive services such as screening, counseling, and preventive medications. The USPSTF conducts scientific evidence reviews of a broad range of clinical preventive health care services and develops recommendations for primary care clinicians and health systems to be included in the Guide to Clinical Preventive Services. The USPSTF assigns each recommendation a letter grade External Website Policy (an A, B, C, D, or I) based on the strength of the evidence and the balance of benefits and harms of a preventive service. The USPSTF recommendation statements are receiving increased public notice as the Affordable Care Act mandates that A and B recommendations are adopted and covered by Medicare and private insurers within a year of their release. Additionally, the AHRQ produces an annual report for Congress that outlines all of that year’s recommendations, and the Insufficient (I) grade recommendations are prominently featured.

As a partner organization, the ODP works closely with AHRQ and the USPSTF to provide scientific input from NIH Institutes and Centers on draft research plans, draft evidence reviews, and clinical practice guidelines to be included in the Guide to Clinical Preventive Services. The ODP also disseminates information to NIH Institutes and Centers about high-priority evidence gaps for clinical preventive services that have been identified by the USPSTF. A list of I statements and a brief summary of research needs and gaps is provided in Resources for Researchers, the ODP’s online information portal for extramural investigators. The ODP also links to the Task Force’s annual report to Congress, which identifies gaps in the evidence base and recommends priority areas that warrant further examination.

Community Preventive Services Task Force External Website Policy

The Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF) is an independent, non-federal panel of prevention experts that conducts rigorous systematic reviews and provides public health recommendations to the CDC to inform decision-making about policy, practice, and research priorities for community preventive services. Recommendations from the CPSTF are published in The Community Guide to Preventive Services External Website Policy. The ODP is an official liaison member and works with the CDC and CPSTF members to ensure that recommendations represent the views, concerns, and needs of the NIH and our constituents. ODP staff also serve on, or recommend NIH scientists to serve on, systematic review teams, and help to translate CPSTF recommendations into action.

The CPSTF has developed an online resource of Community Guide Tools External Website Policy, which works hand-in-hand with The Community Guide to Preventive Services to help public health practitioners assess and apply evidence-based strategies.

The CPSTF released its 2016 Annual Report to Congress, Federal Agencies and Prevention Stakeholders (PDF - 2.35 MB) External Website Policy. The report highlights the 17 evidence-based findings the Task Force produced in fiscal year 2015 and links to stories of how states, health care systems, and communities used Task Force recommendations to address health needs, including examples of the effects of using evidence to improve public health outcomes.