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Adolescence is a critical stage of development during which physical, intellectual, emotional, and psychological changes occur.  While adolescence is a relatively healthy period of life, adolescents begin to make lifestyle choices and establish behaviors that affect both their current and future health.  During this transition from childhood to adulthood, serious health and safety issues such as motor vehicle crashes, violence, substance use, and risky sexual behaviors can adversely affect adolescents and young adults.  For instance, in 2013, over 1 in 5 reported current tobacco use, and among those sexually active, almost 2 out of 3 reported not using condoms regularly.

Parents have an important role in helping their adolescents stay healthy, but there are other influences on the choices adolescents make.  Of the 42 million U.S. adolescents, age 10-19 years, 91% are enrolled in school, making schools and academic institutions an ideal place to foster lifelong healthy behaviors.  Other community level interventions can also make the healthy choice the easy choice.  Interventions that improve adolescent health care delivery are needed.  Healthcare systems should continue to improve access to and use of clinical preventive services and provide opportunities for young patients to learn to manage their own health.

In this session of Grand Rounds, we explore adolescent health, specifically how families, community organizations, schools, and government agencies can work together to encourage adolescents to avoid risk and adopt health-promoting behaviors.

Beyond the Data - NEW

Today’s adolescents are engaging less in some risky behaviors, yet they need help in other areas as they navigate the teen years. Listen as Dr. John Iskander and Dr. Kathleen Ethier discuss the results of the 2017 version of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey to learn about the progress being made and the challenges that remain.

Beyond the Data

Dr. Phoebe Thorpe and Dr. Stephanie Zaza discuss the importance of making adolescent health a priority. Adolescents are in a very unique developmental stage and there are many levels of intervention that can help nurture that development.

Presented By

CAPT Stephanie Zaza, MD, MPH
Director, Division of Adolescent and School Health
National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, CDC
Patricia J. Dittus, PhD
Lead Behavioral Scientist, Social and Behavioral Research and Evaluation Branch, Division of STD Prevention
National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, CDC
Shannon L. Michael, PhD, MPH
Health Scientist, School Health Branch, Division of Population Health
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, CDC
Claire D. Brindis, DrPH
Professor, Pediatrics and Health Policy
Director, Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies

University of California at San Francisco

Facilitated By

John Iskander, MD, MPH
Scientific Director
Phoebe Thorpe, MD, MPH
Deputy Scientific Director
Susan Laird, MSN, RN
Communications Director

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  • Page last reviewed: February 28, 2018
  • Page last updated: February 28, 2018
  • Content source:
    • Office of the Associate Director for Science
    • Page maintained by: Office of the Associate Director for Communication
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