1. McCartney, Patricia R. PhD, RNC, FAAN

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How great to have an entire issue of MCN devoted to adolescent health! For that reason, this column presents an overview of quality online resources specifically for adolescent health.


Adolescent Health Discussion Lists

Where can nurses ask questions, share practices, and learn about adolescent health? Surprisingly, there are no active nursing discussion lists focused entirely on adolescent healthcare issues. However, one well-established nursing discussion list, the School Nursing List, does include adolescent topics. Recent "hot" topics on the School Nursing list relevant to adolescent health have included: implementation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), privacy protections for health information in the schools, interventions to reduce "bullying," and promotion of backpack safety. To subscribe to the School Nursing List send an e-mail to with the following message in the subject header:subscribe SCHLRN-L yourname. To search the School Nursing archives for past messages, visit escribe online (


Another child health list that includes adolescent topics is the Agency for Health Care Research & Quality (AHRQ) Child and Adolescent Health Listserv(R) (AHRQKID-L). The list is actually a newsletter from AHRQ (not really a "discussion"), but it includes announcements about federally sponsored conferences, programs, and grants relevant to teen health. To subscribe, visit the AHRQ home page: and click on Child Health. The AHRQ Child Health Web site offers numerous additional resources relevant to adolescent health (McCartney, 2002).


The Adolescent Health Discussion Group (the former Society for Adolescent Medicine Adolescent Health Discussion List) is an interdisciplinary list "for the discussion of the health of youth, including clinical and public health issues"; however, the traffic is very light and contains announcements rather than discussion. To subscribe to the Adolescent Health list send an e-mail to with the following message in the subject header:subscribe ADHEALTH-L yourname. While I monitored this list over several months, most of the posts to the ADHEALTH-L list were from the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools (, a comprehensive and current site on school health.


Web Sites About Adolescent Health

Professional, government, and commercial adolescent health Web sites are plentiful, but a few stand out as particularly informative. A good place to begin is the site for the AMA's Adolescent Health Resources: The site includes the Healthy People 2010 adolescent objectives, preventive care, hot topics such as "bullying," and a list of comprehensive, annotated, and well-maintained resource links (e.g., American College Health Association, Society for Adolescent Medicine, and the Maternal and Child Health Bureau-sponsored Partners in Program Planning for Adolescent Health [PIPPAH]).


A unique site is the Adolescent Health Transition Project (AHTP). The AHTP is designed to "smooth the transition from pediatric to adult health care for adolescents with special health care needs (chronic illnesses, physical or developmental disabilities)," and the site includes valuable strategies and actual tools to promote adolescent autonomy. Find it at


The "Band-Aides & Blackboards: Teens" site ( is designed for teens themselves; however, professionals can learn the perceptions and needs of teens with chronic illnesses or disabilities by reading their stories.


One valuable site for obtaining adolescent health statistics is the ChildStatsGov: Forum on Child and Family Statistics (; search for "adolescent."


For those interested in adolescent health, an opportunity is waiting for you to bring discussions to the ADHEALTH list, or to start a nursing discussion list on adolescent health! Having initiated a nursing discussion list (perinatal nursing discussion list), I can attest to the great rewards that can result from such an endeavor on behalf of nurses in your specialty.


Surprisingly, there are no active nursing discussion lists focused entirely on adolescent healthcare issues. This is your opportunity to start one!




McCartney, P. (2002). Finding information about quality healthcare on the Internet:, The American Journal of Maternal-Child Nursing, 27( 5), 299. [Context Link]