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 May 2011

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From the CEO

Adolescent & Young Adult Health

By Mike R. Fraser, PhD CAE and

Jennifer O’Brien
Minnesota’s State Adolescent Health Coordinator and President-Elect of the National Network of State Adolescent Health Coordinators

This month’s From the CEO features an interview with Jennifer O’Brien, Minnesota’s State Adolescent Health Coordinator and President-Elect of the National Network of State Adolescent Health Coordinators. I caught up with Jennifer to ask her a few questions about the Network, the future of adolescent health, and how she connects with other MCH leaders statewide. [read more] 


Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Dr. Frieden Charges National and Local CDC Grantees to Help Reduce Teen Births

By Lauren Blackmun Elsberry, MPH, CHES
ORISE Fellow
CDC/Office of the Associate Director for Communication

As part of the president’s Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative (TPPI), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Reproductive Health is partnering with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’s) Office of Public Health and Science to reduce teenage pregnancy and address disparities in teen pregnancy/birth rates. The program’s purpose is to demonstrate the effectiveness of innovative, multi-component, community-wide initiatives in reducing teen pregnancy and births in communities with the highest rates, focusing on African American and Latino/Hispanic youth aged 15-19 years.  [read more]       

The Office of Adolescent Health’s Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program: Partnering to Make an Impact

By Evelyn Kappeler
Acting Director
Office of Adolescent Health
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health

Last year, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) awarded teen pregnancy prevention grants to support the replication of teen pregnancy prevention programs that have been shown to be effective through rigorous research as well as the testing of new, innovative approaches to combating teen pregnancy. Multiple offices across HHS worked collaboratively to ensure that these funds were competitively awarded and were based on sound evidence. [read more]

State Transition Results for Youth with Special Health Care Needs 

By Peggy McManus
The National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health

Katherine Rogers
Senior Policy Analyst
The National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health

Nationally, less than half of all youth with special health care needs successfully transition from pediatric to adult health care. A new report, “Health Care Transition for Youth with Special Health Care Needs,” commissioned by Got Transition, the National Health Care Transition Center, examines state and national performance on the transition outcome measure. Prepared by the National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health, this study presents detailed state information about the factors that affect our low national ranking and account for extensive state variation. [read more]

Promoting Innovations in Adolescent Health Care

The National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health is a nonprofit organization, formed by Harriette Fox and Peggy McManus (formerly of the MCH Policy Research Center), to enhance the physical and emotional well-being of adolescents, especially those in low-income and minority communities, by promoting fundamental improvements in the way that adolescent health care is structured and financed. Their aim is to increase access to integrated preventive, physical, behavioral, and sexual health care that can effectively support adolescents in staying healthy, reducing health risk behaviors, identifying their health problems earlier, and taking on responsibility for managing their health care. The National Alliance also seeks to expand holistic health promotion strategies for adolescents in their communities. [read more]

Real Life Story

Inspiring Future MCH Superheroes

By Emily Fiscus
Youth Council Coordinator
Colorado Medical Home Initiative

As a sibling of a young adult with special health care needs, I have grown up in a world of advocacy. I have learned that obstacles are merely dares to succeed and that we are all equipped with the capability it takes to act as a leader. In the past year, I have been fortunate enough to blend my leadership background into a professional role of directing a youth advisory council through the Colorado Medical Home Initiative. Empowering young adults to actualize their full capacities as leaders is humbling. There is a growing desire to include youth in systems that directly affect us, and I strive to become a better leader each and every day to ensure that this inclusion continues. [read more]

Member to Member

Member states were asked the following question: 

What is your state’s plan for the Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP)? [read more]



Success Stories

District of Columbia Department of Health: Reducing Rapid Repeat Pregnancies and One Young Mother’s Journey to Success

By Margaret G. Copemann, BS, CHES, CCHC
Public Health Advisor
District of Columbia Department of Health, Community Health Administration, Child, Adolescent and School Health Bureau

Located within a District of Columbia (DC) Public High School, the Woodson Adolescent Wellness Center (WAWC) provides services on average to 475 teens per year. The Title V funded center is a collaborative project of the Community Health Administration of the DC Department of Health and DC Public Schools. Established in 1994 to provide comprehensive health care services to adolescents; promote pregnancy prevention; and to assist in health education of students who attend HD Woodson Senior High School. [read more]


Embracing a Positive Youth Development Framework to Reduce Adolescent Pregnancies in Idaho

By Mercedes Muñoz, MPA
State Adolescent Health Coordinator
Program Manager, Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention & Sexual Violence Prevention
Bureau of Community & Environmental Health 
Idaho Department of Health and Welfare

Idaho’s Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention (APP) Program utilizes evidence-based or evidence-informed strategies to prevent unplanned pregnancies among adolescents; however, the APP Program has augmented its strategies to be more holistic by incorporating a positive youth development framework for pregnancy prevention. [read more]

Replicating the Teen Outreach Program in Rural Missouri

By Jennifer Farmer
Health Educator II
Adolescent Health Program
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Over the last eight years, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) and community partners have replicated the Teen Outreach Program (TOP) in targeted rural counties. Maternal and Child Health Title V Block Grant funding has and continues to support local programs. DHSS has experienced tremendous success by contracting with local health departments to coordinate and expand TOP replication in their respective counties.  [read more]

Reducing Hispanic Pregnancy Rates: New York’s Comprehensive Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention (CAPP) Initiative 

By Barbara Leo, MS, FNP
Director, Adolescent Health Unit
Bureau of Maternal and Child Health
New York State Department of Health

Kristine Mesler
Associate Director
Bureau of Maternal and Child Health 

New York State (NYS) has made significant progress in reducing adolescent pregnancy rates, with a 40% decline in rates since 1993. However, the racial and ethnic disparities in sexual health outcomes for Hispanic teens remain a serious public health issue. From 2001 to 2008, in stark contrast to significant declines in pregnancy rates among white (23%) and black (19%) teens, pregnancy rates among Hispanic teens increased by nearly 5%. Reducing these disparities is a priority within NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) adolescent sexual health programming. [read more]


View from Washington

Improving Adolescent Health and Coordinating Funding for Teen Pregnancy Prevention

By Brent Ewig, MHS
Director of Public Policy & Government Affairs, AMCHP      

Adolescence is an important time to promote optimal health and to prevent many of the behaviors that can place youth at-risk for health problems. While many adolescents have health insurance, a significant proportion (13 percent) still lack health care coverage and the proportion of adolescents with private insurance is declining. Among young adults, nearly one-third are uninsured, representing more than one in five of all uninsured individuals.  [read more]


Who's New

New MCH Leaders

See a list of new Title V, CYSHCN and NCBDDD Directors and MCHB staff. [read more]

AMCHP welcomes new staff. [read more] 


Get Involved

AMCHP and the text4baby State Enrollment Contest Webinar
AMCHP will be participating in the text4baby State Enrollment Contest, a national competition to enroll pregnant women and new mothers in the text4baby program. The goal of the text4baby State Enrollment Contest is to reach twice as many users through healthy competition among states. The top three states that have enrolled the most users in text4baby between May 10 and October 20 will be announced at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting in Washington, DC. The prize for each of the winning states will be a sponsored luncheon/press event for text4baby partners in that state. [read more]

RFA for the Partnership to Eliminate Disparities in Infant Mortality Action Learning Collaborative
In 2008, CityMatCH, AMCHP and the National Healthy Start Association (NHSA), with funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation created the Partnership to Eliminate Disparities in Infant Mortality. This project seeks to eliminate racial inequities contributing to infant mortality within U.S. urban areas, and is in its second round of funding. A major component of this work is a multi-city Action Learning Collaborative (ALC). The ALC approach is one in which state, local and community collaborative teams are selected, and then provided with training and technical assistance in current research, best practices and systems building. Through the course of the ALC, teams will have the opportunity to network across state lines, strategize to break down barriers in addressing inequities in infant mortality, and design new and innovative solutions tailored to their individual communities. [read more]

Call for Applications: The Healthy Weight Learning Collaborative
With support from HRSA, AMCHP and the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality and a consortium of leading health care and public health organizations have embarked on a nationwide effort focused on the prevention and treatment of childhood and adult obesity. Teams are being recruited to apply for Phase One of the Collaborative, which will be conducted between June 2011 and July 2012. In this phase, we are looking to partner with 10 community teams (one within each HRSA region) with previous experience in cross sector collaboration (clinical care, public health and the community) on public health issues (e.g. tobacco, healthy weight, immunizations, etc). Selected teams will participate in a Breakthrough Series Collaborative approach consisting of two in-person Learning Sessions (September 2011 and May 2012) and one virtual Learning Session (January 2012). [read more]

 To see more Get Involved listings, visit here.


Data and Trends

View the number of current state/territorial adolescent health performance measures by topic here



View and download resources on adolescent/young adult health and teen pregnancy here.


Board of Directors

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Meet AMCHP's staff.