The seven MCH Leadership Education in Adolescent Health (LEAH) training programs provide interdisciplinary leadership training in 5 Core disciplines (medicine, psychology, nursing, nutrition, and social work). The training prepares health professionals for leadership roles in clinical care, research, training, advocacy, and administration with the goal of improving family- and youth-centered, community-based care for adolescents and enhancing the capacity building with Title V programs. The LEAH faculty and fellows also provide Continuing Education (CE) and Technical Assistance (TA). Although each program has special areas of focus, the LEAH programs work together to improve the health status of adolescents, promote quality care, eliminate health disparities, and achieve the Healthy People 2010 Adolescent Objectives through partnerships with state and local health, educational, social service, and mental health agencies, professional organizations, providers, youth, families, and community organizations.

Boston Children’s Hospital

S. Jean Emans, MD
(617) 355-7170
LEAH Program Info

Community Asthma Initiative (CAI)

The Boston LEAH with funding from philanthropy and CDC and Healthy Tomorrows grants provides services to children and adolescents with asthma from 5 urban, poor neighborhoods. CAI provides nurse case management with an individualized plan, asthma education and teaching, medication management, access to care, connection to primary care providers, allergy evaluation, insurance, housing, and community resources, home visits, environmental assessment, and integrated pest management. Patients have had a significant decrease in ER visits due to asthma, hospital admissions, and missed school days  compared to the 6 months prior to enrollment and to a comparison group.

The HSPH and CHB Strategic Training Initiative for the Prevention of Eating Disorders (STRIPED)

Founded by Dr. Austin, this new initiative is creating and disseminating new opportunities for interdisciplinary collaborations aimed at the prevention of eating disorders

Center for Young Women’s Health

The Boston LEAH in collaboration with the Division of Gynecology created the Center for Young Women’s Health with a goal of empowering girls to learn about their health and to provide resources to teens, families, health professionals, and educators. The website: (12 million visitors each year) has 450 health guides and monitored chats on many health issues affecting adolescent girls. The peer leaders provide resident training and community outreach and have given over 40 community presentations on health issues.

Youth Men’s Health Initiative

The Boston LEAH launched a website  for teen boys in 2008 and the visitors continue to increase at a rapid rate.  This website provides carefully researched health information to teenage boys and young men including health guides on topics such as sexual health, nutrition and fitness, eating disorders, and more.

Booking It in the Waiting Room

Many urban youth do not own books and have not made reading a habit. The Boston LEAH created a project five years ago to provide to teens in the waiting room free books which are age appropriate and written by diverse authors. The response has been extraordinarily positive.

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Sexual Orientation and Health Disparities

On 2005 Boston LEAH and Dr. Austin created a postdoctoral fellowship to better understand the causes and solutions for health disparities among sexual minority youth.

LEAH Youth Advisors

The exceptional and diverse Youth Advisors are paid consultants to the LEAH Program; they undertake leadership training, learning to be “experts,” provide consumer feedback, train the Fellows and MTT in communication, and disseminate health information through presentations to youth groups in the surrounding urban community. They also teach the pediatric residents how to interview teens. Results have been disseminated at national SAHM.LEAH Fellows are role models and mentors and obtain feedback from the Youth Advisors about educational initiatives, QI projects, clinic policies, etc. The Youth Advisors write a quarterly e-newsletter, “Teen Talk,” which is distributed to 300 community groups, an update for staff, and a well-read blog on teen issues..

Indiana University Medical Center

Vaughn I. Rickert, PsyD
(317) 274-8812
LEAH Program Info

Picturing a Healthier Future: A State Strategic Plan for Indiana’s Adolescents

The Indiana LEAH program, in conjunction with the Indiana Department of Health and its’ other partners, published and released its first adolescent health plan, Picturing a Healthier Future: A State Strategic Plan for Indiana’s Adolescents. Indiana is among only seven other states to produce such a plan.

Picturing a Healthier Future: A State Strategic Plan for Indiana’s Adolescents identifies ten health priorities (classified into one of two categories: “Access to Care” or “Prevention”) for Hoosier adolescents, and presents these priorities within the context of positive youth development. The Indiana Coalition to Improve Adolescent health (ICIAH) is composed of individuals and representatives from youth-serving agencies and organizations who share the common goal of improving the health of adolescents and emerging adults. The mission of the ICIAH is to promote optimal health and well-being for all Hoosier adolescents (ages 10-24), with an emphasis on prevention and access to quality, comprehensive health care.

The Crispus-LEAH Group Students’ Outlook about Relationships and Health

During the 2009-2010 academic year, 11 students from the Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet School joined with Adolescent Health Trainees in the Indiana LEAH program to identify a health project that was of interest to the students. Their goal was to develop a health project that was relevant to them and their peers. After monthly discussions about health, and reading Indiana’s State Adolescent Health Plan, they identified major health topics that were relevant to adolescents in their school. The health topics are Sex, Drugs, Pregnancy, Dating Violence, Gangs, Domestic Violence, and Sexually Transmitted Infections. For each health topic, the students provided information on (1) percentage of adolescents affected, (2) risk factors, (3) consequences of behaviors, and (4) prevention and potential solutions. For CLG-SOAR’s final project, the students wrote and performed a skit for their 9th grade class, and we are delighted to share the skit with you in film format on the ICIAH website.

Issues in Adolescent Health

The Indiana LEAH has developed this 3 hour graduate course in the School of Nursing for all nursing students enrolled in the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner program. It uses a seminar format to survey key issues in adolescent health, such as physical and psychosocial growth and development, teenage pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, substance abuse, and violence and abuse. Findings from evidence-based practice and major theoretical perspectives are employed to formulate recommendations for clinical practice, future research, and policy.

University of Alabama at Birmingham

Tina Simpson, MD, MPH

Public Health Adolescent Medicine Health Behavior Internship

UAB LEAH has developed an Adolescent Medicine Health Behavior Internship. It is a 3 hour course in the School of Public Health. This semester-long internship is designed to provide undergraduate students with an authentic hands-on academic medicine experience. The course allows students the opportunity to participate in didactic and clinical sessions focusing on pediatrics, specifically adolescent medicine. Students work with faculty members, fellows, trainees and residents of the UAB Department of Pediatrics specializing in adolescent medicine, nutrition, psychology, nursing and social work. Over the course of the semester, students will have the opportunity to shadow in adolescent medicine clinics and give an end of the semester presentation on a “Hot Topic” in Adolescent Health.

Adolescent Actor Project

UAB LEAH faculty has developed clinical training scenarios that emphasize motivational interviewing techniques and cultural competence. Adolescents have been trained as adolescent actors/simulated patients for trainee clinical training assessments. Trainees’ participation in this training is videotaped and they receive valuable feedback.

College Readiness

Trainees are actively involved with the activities of the Youth Advisory Council (YAC) which meets to provide input for clinical programming and community outreach activities. Building upon past YAC input, faculty, trainees and YAC members sponsor a LEAH college readiness fair for area high school students and their parents. This event provides information not only on issues related to adolescent health and wellbeing but also academic success and college financial aid. For this event, LEAH faculty, trainees, and YAC members have partnered with the YMCA Youth Center and area colleges and junior colleges.

University of California at San Francisco

Charles E. Irwin, Jr., MD
(415) 502-2067
LEAH Program Info

High School Student Summer Internship Program in Biomedical and Health Sciences

The UCSF LEAH sponsors a summer program to increase the number of underrepresented youth who are committed to and well positioned for college, as well as careers in biomedical, behavioral, or health sciences. The specific aims of this eight week program are to provide the interns hands-on exposure to scientific research, connect them with mentors, and help improve applications for successful college admission. The interns are assigned a research project and are involved in every aspect, including defining their research question, designing experiments, collecting and analyzing data, and creating a final presentation.

Fellows College

The UCSF LEAH has provided leadership for a Fellows College, instituted in 2004 to help assure academic success for ACGME fellows at UCSF Department of Pediatrics. The fellows participate in the program with about 60 other subspecialty ACGME fellows. During each year of their three year fellowship, they receive guidance and mentorship to maximize their education, research, and individual professional development. This program includes a three year curriculum with rotating topics and a graduated skill building program.

University of Minnesota

Michael Resnick, PhD
(612) 624-9111
LEAH Program Info

University of Minnesota Summer Institute

Under the leadership of the Center for Adolescent Nursing, School of Nursing (and co-sponsored by the UMN Prevention Research Center, the Konopka Institute, and the Minnesota Department of Education), the annual Healthy Youth Development Summer Institute, now in its 13th year, provides a 4-day intensive learning experience focused on effective strategies for promoting healthy youth development. The Institute includes direct application of a variety of teaching-learning strategies that participants can then utilize in their respective settings.

University of Washington

Laura P. Richardson, MD, MPH
(206) 987-2028

Teenology 101 Blog

Under the leadership of Dr. Yolanda Evans, the Teenology 101 Blog is one of the only blogs focusing on  increasing awareness of teen health issues for parents and providers. Blog authors, including multidisciplinary LEAH fellows, write 4-6 blogs per month. The Teenology 101 Blog was recognized as one of the top 15 hospital blogs by the Health Works Collective.

Substance Use Prevention and Treatment: Adolescent Substance Abuse Program, Prevention Works in Seattle  (WINS) Community Coalition to Prevent and Reduce Adolescent Substance Use and the Youth Marijuana Prevention and Education Project (YMPEP)

The Adolescent Substance Abuse Program offers integrated chemical dependency services through consultation in the inpatient setting and multidisciplinary outpatient treatment. The program involves a multidisciplinary treatment team including Adolescent Medicine, Psychiatry, Chemical Dependency and Social Work. Prevention WINS is a community coalition funded by a Drug Free Communities grant that is led by a community coordinator in the UW Division of Adolescent Medicine. Prevention WINS implements and supports a comprehensive array of substance abuse prevention strategies at the community level including an evidence-based middle school prevention curriculum, parent and community education, media campaigns, outreach to retailers, and legislative advocacy. Members represent many community sectors including parents, law enforcement, schools, health care, media, youth-serving organizations, substance abuse treatment, government and faith organizations. Members of our team are also actively engaged in advocacy to reduce Marijuana use in the region’s youth, publishing a pamphlet on the topic, hosting regular community discussions, and participating in open policy discussions to assure that regulations are developed to reduce the risk of marijuana are designed to minimize teen exposure and harm.

Collaborative Care Models for Behavioral Health Integration into Medical Settings

Several of our faculty have led efforts to expand integration of care through the development and testing of research models examining collaborative care. Dr. Richardson has generated new data showing the collaborative care treatment of depression in teens to be both highly effective in reducing symptoms and cost effective. Dr. Cari McCarty has generated new research data demonstrating the  effectiveness of the integration of behavioral health through collaborative care for teens with concussion and, is additionally, working as a consultant to assist in the implementation of a collaborative care model for rural teens with depression delivered through the Pediatric Access Line to youth in Washington State. This year, LEAH trainees and faculty will also be implementing a trial of collaborative care for teens with depression in the Seattle Children’s Adolescent and Young Adult Clinic in order to inform implementation and needed training materials and resources.

Online Multimedia Suicide Prevention Training for Health Care Providers

UW LEAH faculty and fellows have partnered with Forefront: innovations in suicide prevention to create an online multimedia training program in suicide prevention for health care providers to meet the requirements of mandated training for health care providers in Washington State

Online Training on Implicit and Unconscious Bias in the Care of Teenagers

UW LEAH faculty and fellows have developed an online training to increase awareness and recognition of the impact of implicit and unconscious bias in the care of teens and young adults.

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