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Adolescent Health

The Adolescent Health Program assists all the clinical areas to provide the best practices in youth care.

Program background

The COUTH Youth Report (October 1995) looked at the health care services for adolescents in Vancouver hospitals and made a number of recommendations about improving services, especially services for youth preparing to transfer to adult hospitals. The report recommended creating welcoming environments for youth and providing developmentally-appropriate care so that issues of sexuality, substance use, risk-taking behaviours, independence in health care, and planning for the future are addressed during health care visits.

The Youth Health Program Vision (2000) identified the essential components in an effective youth program: clinical services, education and training, health promotion, advocacy, and research. These components form the backbone of our commitment to improve the health status of youth throughout B.C.

Youth come to the hospital for clinical day visits or for overnight stays. Over 1,700 youth visit the hospital every month. The Adolescent Health Program assists all the clinical areas to provide the best practices in youth care. Through clinical support, consultation, education and materials, the Adolescent Health Program helps integrate youth-focused care across the site.

Supporting your practice

Optimal care of youth in the hospital and in ambulatory care requires that both the facilities and the staff are sensitive to the youth’s particular developmental needs.

The adolescent years are dynamic times of growth and development that involves peer relationships, body image, autonomy/interdependence, family relationships, spirituality, values, and cognitive changes.

There are resources to support your practice:


  • SAHM - The Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine: a leader in adolescent medicine
  • The McCreary Centre Society - conducts research on BC youth through the school system. The research spans many youth health topics. Their most recent report has just been published regarding their 2008 data.


SOURCE: Adolescent Health ( )
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