Sustainability of public health programs: the example of tobacco treatment services in Massachusetts

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Community Health Centers; Community Mental Health Centers; administration; Financing, Government; Health Resources; Health Services Research; Humans; Interviews as Topic; Massachusetts; Organizational Objectives; Personnel Staffing and Scheduling; Planning Techniques; Program Evaluation; Public Health Administration; *Public Policy; Qualitative Research; Smoking Cessation; Substance Abuse Treatment Centers; administration


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences | Women's Studies


Sustaining important public or grant-funded services after initial funding is terminated is a major public health challenge. We investigated whether tobacco treatment services previously funded within a statewide tobacco control initiative could be sustained after state funding was terminated abruptly. We found that 2 key strategies-redefining the scope of services being offered and creative use of resources-were factors that determined whether some community agencies were able to sustain services at a much higher level than others after funding was discontinued. Understanding these strategies and developing them at a time when program funding is not being threatened is likely to increase program sustainability.

DOI of Published Version



Am J Public Health. 2006 Aug;96(8):1363-9. Epub 2006 Jun 29. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

American journal of public health

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

PubMed ID