Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Lessons Learned in NYS

Originally presented on March 15, 2012

Kristine Mesler
Associate Director
Bureau of Maternal and Child Health
NYS Department of Health

Jane Levine Powers, PhD
Project Director, ACT for Youth Center of Excellence
Cornell University

Adolescent pregnancy is a critical public health problem facing New York State, with 54.2 per 1,000 15 to 19 year old females becoming pregnant each year (2009 rate). Pregnancy at too early an age interrupts and disrupts normal adolescent development and often results in significant academic, social and economic costs for the mother, father and child. Since its peak in 1993, New York State has had a 43% decline in adolescent pregnancy rates. Despite this positive trend, New York State continues to have striking regional and racial/ethnic disparities in adolescent pregnancy rates. Pregnancy rates in New York City and other urban areas are at least double that of the rest of the state. Pregnancy rates are consistently almost three times higher for black and Hispanic adolescents than for white adolescents. Intensive public health efforts are necessary to engage hard to reach youth and all sectors of the community in addressing this issue.

New York State Department of Health has implemented a comprehensive approach to prevention of teen pregnancy. This Public Health Live will highlight key elements of our approach including community based prevention programming, academic support for training and technical assistance, and health care provider training.

Learning Objectives
After watching this webcast participants will be able to:

  • Provide an overview of the epidemiology of teen pregnancy in NYS and how it has changed over the last several decades
  • Discuss how NYS has previously addressed this problem
  • Describe how NYS has adopted a Youth Development Approach to address Teen Pregnancy
  • Describe the Comprehensive Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention (CAPP) Initiative and the role of Evidence Based Programs
  • Provide examples of the NYS approach