Promoting Positive Adolescent Health Behaviors and Outcomes: Thriving in the 21st Century
Adolescence is a period of immense growth, learning, exploration, and opportunity during which youth develop the knowledge, attitudes, and skills that will help them thrive throughout life. While most youth traverse
adolescence without incident, some need additional support to promote their optimal health.
Sometimes such support comes in the form of prevention or intervention programs designed to encourage healthy behaviors that will follow the adolescent through adulthood. A committee of the National Academies was asked to identify the key elements that help make these programs effective in improving outcomes for youth.
While limited research prevented the identification of a set of key components, the committee’s review of available evidence did reveal the strengths of population-wide programs that consider adolescent risk taking as normative, support social-emotional learning and positive youth development, and are provided from childhood throughout adolescence. The committee’s report urges federal agencies to support these programs, as well as further research to enable the identification of core components of effective interventions.
Sponsor: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
The focus of this study is to examine key program factors that can improve health outcomes related to adolescent behavior. Using evidence from a variety of youth-serving programs, the committee will recommend successful strategies that can be used to inform the effective implementation of federal programming initiatives, including the Teen Pregnancy Prevention program.
December 12, 2019 - Report Release Webinar - Promoting Positive Adolescent Health Behaviors and Outcomes: Thriving in the 21st Century
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine held a public release of the new report, Promoting Positive Adolescent Health Behaviors and Outcomes: Thriving in the 21st Century. The webinar included an overview of the study process and discussions of the report's conclusions, recommendation, and key messages.
Statement of Task
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will convene an ad hoc committee to review key questions related to the effective implementation of the Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) program. The committee, using an optimal health lens, will explore the scientific and public health literature surrounding key elements or core components effective in improving behavioral outcomes for youth. Specifically, the committee will analyze components of a variety of youth programs which may be successful in preventing adolescent-risk behaviors with the parallel goal of accelerating progress toward the discontinuation (and not merely the reduction) of those risks among currently engaged adolescents. The committee will identify the programs and outcomes to review and examine which factors contribute to optimal health. In addition, the committee will consider broader issues of methodology as they relate to examining specific components of programs in comparison to research that uses the program as the unit of analysis.
The report will recommend a research agenda that incorporates a focus on optimal health for youth. The report will also offer recommendations on ways that the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) can use its role to foster the adoption of promising elements of youth-focused programs in the initiatives it oversees such as mental and physical health, adolescent development, and reproductive health and teen pregnancy. Drawing on lessons learned, the report will present recommendations on ways OASH youth-focused programs could be improved.
Open Activities of the Committee
April 17, 2019 - Public Information Gathering Session
Angela Bryan, PhD Professor
Psychology and Neuroscience
University of Colorado Boulder
Tammy Chang, MD, MPH, MS Assistant Professor
University of Michigan
Rosalie Corona, PhD Professor
Virginia Commonwealth University
Tamera Coyne-Beasley, MD, MPH, FAAP, FSAHM Derrol Dawkins, MD Endowed Chair in Adolescent Medicine
Professor of Pediatrics and Internal Medicine
Division Director, UAB Adolescent Medicine
Vice Chair, Pediatrics for Community Engagement
University of Alabama Birmingham
Bonnie Halpern-Felsher, PhD Professor
Division of Adolescent Medicine
Department of Pediatrics
Jeff Hutchinson, MD CEO
The Wade Alliance, LLC
Velma McBride Murry, PhD
Lois Autrey Betts Endowed Chair and Joe B. Wyatt Distinguished University Professor
Department of Human and Organizational Development
Sandra Jo Wilson, PhD Principal Associate