The Spectrum of Prevention is a systematic tool that promotes a multifaceted range of activities for effective prevention. Originally developed by Larry Cohen while working as Director of Prevention Programs at the Contra Costa County Health Department, the Spectrum is based on the work of Marshall Swift in treating developmental disabilities. It has been used nationally in prevention initiatives targeting traffic safety, violence prevention, injury prevention, nutrition, and fitness. The Spectrum identifies multiple levels of intervention and helps people move beyond the perception that prevention is merely education. The Spectrum is a framework for a more comprehensive understanding of prevention that includes six levels for strategy development. These levels, delineated in the table below, are complementary and when used together produce a synergy that results in greater effectiveness than would be possible by implementing any single activity or linear initiative. At each level, the most important activities related to prevention objectives should be identified. As these activities are identified they will lead to interrelated actions at other levels of the Spectrum.