STAGE 5. Defining the action plan

What steps should be completed?

STEP 1: Specify intervention actions

Actions are defined to understand how to reach the specific objectives, i.e., how to get the target population to change its relationship with drugs. In this step, we are trying to review the detailed information in Stage 3 of One Step@a Time concerning the specific objectives, and to break each one down into action strategies, place of application, duration, responsible person and intervention procedure.

Action strategies / What? These are the vehicle of change in the population. Therefore, planning the most appropriate strategies to modify personal and contextual determinants is a common concern for professionals who design interventions in the field of drug dependence. To address this task more confidently, it is highly advisable to review the evidence for the efficacy of the different intervention strategies. +

You will find strategies aimed at changing personal and contextual determinants in this review. The latter are framed within what is known as "environmental prevention". +

Getting the population involved in programme actions, in other words, defining the capture and retention strategies to be used in the intervention, is also a major concern. +

When designing an action plan for an intervention there are two possibilities: a) designing a new programme or intervention, or b) adapting a programme or an intervention that has been developed and used before in other contexts, that pursues similar objectives and is directed at groups of population similar to those of our intervention. +

Procedures and materials / How? The procedure explains how the intervention will be carried out, the intensity and frequency of interventions, etc. Many interventions also include materials addressed to the target population (e.g., to transmit drugs knowledge and values) so it is important that they are accepted by it. The people who implement the intervention also often need materials (documents or other tools), for example, to document or compile information about the development of the intervention. +

Place / Where? This refers to the physical and social scenario where the main actions of the intervention will be developed. For example, the community, family, school, youth leisure spaces, etc. The assessment of needs (and the type of programme: prevention, harm reduction, etc.) will help us to detect the best settings to locate the intervention. +

Responsible / Who? This is the person or people responsible for developing the programme or intervention. This includes the people who will implement the strategies in the target population and those who will coordinate, follow up and evaluate the intervention (planners, coordinators, etc.). This may actually be the same people, depending on the type of intervention. +

Duration / How long? It is useful to estimate the time required to develop each action strategy.