Skip Navigation Links
Skip Navigation Links
September/October 2017Expand September/October 2017
July/August 2017Expand July/August 2017
May/June 2017Expand May/June 2017
March/April 2017Expand March/April 2017
January/February 2017Expand January/February 2017
November/December 2016Expand November/December 2016
September/October 2016Expand September/October 2016
July/August 2016Expand July/August 2016
May/June 2016Expand May/June 2016
March/April 2016Expand March/April 2016
January/February 2016Expand January/February 2016
November/December 2015Expand November/December 2015
September/October 2015Expand September/October 2015
July/August 2015Expand July/August 2015
May/June 2015Expand May/June 2015
March/April 2015Expand March/April 2015
January/February 2015Expand January/February 2015
ArchiveExpand Archive
Special Edition - EPRExpand Special Edition - EPR

 Success Story

Iowa Uses AMCHP Life Course Intensive TA Project to Focus on Adolescent Health

By Brittni Frederiksen
CDC/CSTE Applied Epidemiology Fellow, Bureau of Family Health, Iowa Department of Public Health

Mary Greene
Community Health Consultant, Bureau of Family Health, Iowa Department of Public Health
 
Addie Rasmusson
Community Health Consultant, Bureau of Family Health, Iowa Department of Public Health

 In 2012, the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) initiated efforts with both internal and external stakeholders to "heighten" the focus on adolescents and their well-being. Through this enhanced effort the Adolescent Health Collaborative (AHC), an intra-agency group of individuals working on programs for adolescents and young adults, was formed. This group allows collaboration at the department level for programs impacting adolescents and young adults in the state. In addition, IDPH has strong, community-based partnerships with MCH agencies that serve Iowa's most vulnerable populations across all 99 counties in the state. IDPH leveraged these partnerships to advance the work of adolescent health through trainings and sharing of resources and strategies to support this system building initiative.

For the AMCHP Life Course Intensive TA Project, IDPH engaged the AHC to focus on life course indicators specific to the adolescent population. The AHC selected 12 "upstream" indicators that can positively affect health outcomes later in life, including: early sexual intercourse, HPV immunization, bullying, depression, smoking and alcohol use. Using the 12 indicators, the team created an interactive resource complete with data, talking points, supplemental information, and resources designed specifically for interactions between school nurses and adolescents. IDPH initiated a pilot program with several school nurses prior to launching the interactive resource statewide. IDPH trained the school nurses involved in the pilot program on how to use the interactive resource and asked them to use it during their daily interactions with students. Through this pilot period, the feedback IDPH received from the school nurses was that the resource was an effective tool to engage adolescents in conversations about topics affecting their health and felt the resource should be provided to parents and faculty as well.

Although the AMCHP project came to a close, IDPH has continued to engage school nurses in integrating life course theory into their work. In September 2015, in partnership with the school nurse consultant at the Iowa Department of Education, the interactive resource was sent to all school nurses across the state. IDPH took their life course work a step further and launched a webinar series for school nurses that focuses on one to two indicators per month throughout the 2015-2016 school year. Each webinar covers Iowa data related to the indicator, along with additional information, initiatives, and resources, and considers the implications for school nurses working with Iowa's youth.

The work that has been completed thus far, as well as the work that IDPH continues to do would not have been possible without the Life Course Intensive TA project. This opportunity provided IDPH the ability to build a stronger, more cohesive AHC, and the potential to reach thousands of youth and the partnerships necessary to continue our work specific to adolescent health.