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HRSA/OWH - Adolescent Girls Health – Interview With Center for Young Women’s Health

Boston, MA
September 12, 2008


MORRISA RICE: Good day to all and welcome to the first podcast coordinated by the Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, HRSA, Office of Women's Health.

I'm Lieutenant Commander Morrisa Rice, public health analyst in the HRSA Office of Women's Health, which is under the direction of Dr. Sabrina Matoff‑Stepp.

The work of the HRSA Office of Women's Health is guided by the theme of healthy women building healthy communities as well as promoting women's health across their lifespan.

And because adolescent health is such an important part of a woman's lifespan, our first podcast topic in this series will showcase the Center for Young Women's Health in Boston, New York.

The HRSA Office of Women's Health is also responsible for disseminating information on topics that are sex gender specific across the six HRSA bureaus in various offices.

The speakers for this podcast are Leadership in Education in Adolescent Health, also known as LEAH, grantee funded by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau Division of Research Training and Education.

The goal of this podcast is to provide the listener with an overview of the Center for Young Women's Health and its various online and reading materials as well as their community initiatives. I would like to welcome our speakers.

First you will hear from Ms. Phaedra Thomas, who is one of the co‑directors for the center. Phaedra is a nurse educator and author of several educational resources including Health Guide, Curricula and Modules. She also developed community programs to reach out to teens in the Boston communities, unity programs. She was recognized for her leadership in innovations in children's health as the winner of the 2003 David S. Weiner award.

You will also hear from Ms. Freedom Baird, who is the center's web project manager and accomplished web designer. She is highly skilled, dedicated and passionate about her work and has developed a website as well as other health information in various formats to meet the needs of young women, young men, parents and others that will be discussed during this podcast.

Finally, you will hear from Ms. Denise Rorie, Senior Youth Advisor at the center. She has been involved with the center for two years, and as a peer leader she has given numerous presentations to more than a dozen youth organizations in Boston and surrounding communities.

She has her own column in the quarterly CYWH publication, Teen Talk and writes a teen blog. She and her fellow peers also train the pediatric residents on how to effectively interview and talk with adolescents in a healthcare setting. And what a great resource she is when trying to reach adolescents regarding the importance of their health.

Thank you for your interest in this podcast on adolescent and young women's health. We will begin now with Ms. Phaedra Thomas. Phaedra.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Hello. I'm delighted to talk about the Center for Young Women's Health at Children's Hospital Boston. We're located in Boston, Massachusetts.

And it's just wonderful to tell you about the successes of our program. And I'm going to give you a little bit of a history of the program. But first tell you that the Center for Young Women's Health was a first of its kind in the nation.

And we believe internationally as well. Our focus is international in scope and collaborative in nature. And we are committed to improving the health and well‑being of adolescent girls and young women.

We offer clinical services, research program, educational courses for healthcare providers, a resource center for patients and their families and an award‑winning website

The founding physicians here, Dr. Jean Emans, who is the Chief of Gynecology ‑‑ Chief of Adolescent Medicine, and Dr. Mark Laufer, Chief of Gynecology, really recognized the urgent need for education, clinical care, research and healthcare advocacy for adolescent girls and young women.

And this was an important initiative because it was to finally address the needs of young women who often fall between the cracks of pediatric or children healthcare and adult young women healthcare.

Both Dr. Emans and Dr. Laufer felt that we needed to establish a resource center which was an idea to have a lending library, a place where teen girls could come with their parents to learn more about their reproductive health.

We opened our resource center back in 1999, and we set out to write health guides that were teen‑friendly. By teen‑friendly, I mean written at a level that teens could comprehend. A lot of the medical information is written for adults and above and very confusing for girls to learn about their reproductive health as well as learning about the menstrual cycle and hormones and all that kind of stuff. So it was very important for us to make the health guides readable and comprehendible for these teens.

We established this website,, so we could go beyond just our population of patients and reach many more young women around the country and really around the world. And a little bit later Freedom, web project manager, will tell you about how many visitors we get from different parts of the world and what the 10 top health guides are.

To tell you just a little bit about the space here and the resource center, we're located right between the Adolescent Medicine Outpatient Department and the Gynecology Outpatient Department. So when patients come here, when teens come for their appointments, they can stop by the resource center and use computers, look at books, borrow books, talk to a nurse educator.

We have nutritionists here, and it's very interactive, where girls can learn about different health conditions. And we help research questions, not only for patients and their families, but also for healthcare providers here.

With that, I'm going to turn it over to Freedom Baird who is going to talk to you about our successful website and tell you about our visitors.


FREEDOM BAIRD: Okay. I think that one of the things that makes our website unique, actually, is the fact that not only do we work on materials like our website and print materials and brochures, but we also have a youth advisory program here in the center which you'll hear about more later in the podcast.

And as part of our youth advisory program, we work on a daily basis with teenagers. And what that allows us to do, really, is cultivate a voice which we use when we develop our materials that we put online or print.

And we're able to deliver health information in a way that's clear and accurate, but also just really speaks to the teens and is very supportive to them as well.

So let me tell you a little bit about our web statistics which we're very proud of. The website's been around actually for almost 10 years. And in the beginning, when the site first went up, there were just a few visitors a day, and everyone would check the stats and see the numbers creep up into the hundreds and then into the thousands.

And in the last few years the numbers have really taken off, so that now, I just checked the stats yesterday, our website received about 600,000 visitors per month, which is about seven million a year. So we're very proud of that. It's probably one of the most popular teen health websites in the English language out there on the Internet.

Our readers are viewing about a million pages of content a month. And when they come to the site they're actually reading. We can tell that they're reading, because there are on a given page from anywhere from two to six minutes, which is a pretty long time for a teenager to be reading a page.

Most of our readers find us through Google, by typing in keywords. And right now our most popular English language health guide is on body piercing. Through sort of the mysteries of Google when you type in "body piercing," we're one of the first things that come up.

We also have over 200 health guides, many of which have been translated into Spanish, which means we also have a huge Spanish readership. A little bit less than half our readers are Spanish‑speaking. And right now our most popular Spanish language guides are on STDs and birth control.

We're also very proud of the fact that we have readers literally from all over the world. I'd like to say they're from Australia to Zambia. Mostly they're from the United States and Mexico. But we have ‑‑ I'm just looking at a list of countries where people are visiting us from, including Malaysia, Bolivia, Australia, literally all around the world.

So, with the success of the young women's site, we had some interest in and kind of realized there was also a need to develop comparable materials for boys. And about a little over a year ago we tackled the task of revising a lot of our materials and developing them into a site for boys as well, which we launched in the spring of 2008.

The URL for that is We call it the baby brother of the girl's site, although it's really the teenage brother. And we're starting to see a lot of traffic to that site as well. It was an interesting process to revive the girls' guides and turn them into guys' guides. We had to make them a lot shorter, less chatty and have more diagrams.

So we are very excited about that as well. A little bit later on in the podcast maybe I'll tell you a little bit more about some of the other features that we offer online like chats. But right now I'm wondering if Phaedra wants to talk about the Youth Advisory Program, is that?


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Yes. We have many programs under the umbrella of the Center for Young Women's Health. And one of our success stories and where we've invested a lot of time and energy and love is our Youth Advisory Program. That started about nine years ago. And when we first launched the youth part of this, it was called the Youth Web Advisory Program.

And we initially got some funding to hire five high school students and train them on how to access reliable information on the web. And we actually, in collaboration with health resources and services administration, we produced a manual on how to start a Youth Web Advisory Program. And partnering with teens and accessing health resources.

And that was so successful that we applied for funding through other sources and were able to secure funding to call it a Youth Advisory Program and expand our repertoire a little bit to train these peer leaders on how to train these peer leaders about safety in relationships, safety on the street, safety on the Internet and also teach them about nutrition and fitness.

So we developed a leadership training where we ended up hiring more peer leaders over the course of the last few years, training them and having them go out into the community with one of our staff people, which was usually me.

We'd go out and we'd talk to groups of teens, and we have created different modules on different topics which Denise will talk about. Denise is our senior peer leader.

And it's been a great program. We've been able ‑‑ over the course of the last nine years we've done over 300 presentations with more than 50 or 60 agencies in the Boston area. These agencies include the Boys and Girls Club, the Association of Latina, and Charlestown Boys and Girls Club, the YWCA programs, Girls Coalition, many programs of the Junior League of Boston, Patriot for Girl Scouts, many, many programs. And it's been wonderful for us to be out there and to feel that we've made an impact in the community.

And really our goal has been to empower girls with information so they can make good choices about their health.

So at this point I think I'm going to just turn it over to Denise who is our peer leader. Now she's done this for two years. She's now hiring our next set of peer leaders. She's a wonderful speaker and very poised for her age. She's just entering college this year. She's walked the walk. So she's going to talk to you about what it's been like to be a peer leader and really her role here.


DENISE RORIE: Well, hello. I'm Denise. And so my experience has a peer leader has really been overall great. Interacting with patients that come in and present in different groups of girls has really helped boost my confidence and be comfortable with public speaking.

Working here in a professional setting has really helped me to get to see what it's like to work in the real world and be professional.

So I'm going to get into a little bit about what I do here as a peer leader. There's really two aspects in the center and in the community.

So in the center I look to give out health information to patients that come in. They may have questions on birth control, fitness and nutrition, menstruation, really a whole range of topics, and I'm here to help them find reliable information on our website as well as other information on other websites that is reliable.

Also, I'm looked to do regular office things, like answer phones, make copies and things like that, that need to be done to keep the center moving. One of my most important roles here is to make sure that the information that is being given out is teen‑friendly so teens are able to understand what they're reading. They're able to relate to the article as well as not being bored while they're reading it.

One of the important things about our website that Freedom was talking about that I can really get involved in is our blog, where we put up pictures and we talk about our experiences here at the center, the things that we do on a day‑to‑day basis, and we get to share that with the people that go onto our website.

And also what I do here is I work with the residents so the new doctors that come in each month into the adolescent clinic, they might have not had a lot of experience speaking with teens or getting information about teens' personal lives. So we give them a little bit of practice before they jump right in.

So for the residents, we pretend to be a certain character that may have some social issues in terms of getting along at school or problems at home and the doctor will then have to figure out those issues and figure out how they can help us.

This really helps them get insight into what it's like for teens in the doctor's office and how they can improve.

Also being involved with the main Children's Hospital is another part of what the Youth Advisory Program is about. We're involved with the Teen Advisory Committee where we talk about patients‑to‑doctor relationships, and we also throw parties for the inpatients at Children's so that they can get, they can feel what it's like to kind of be, I don't want to say normal, kind be of in the real world at dances, at parties interacting with people and having a good time. So that's definitely a fun part of what I do here at the center.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Just to back up a second, I want Denise to explain a little bit more about the Teen Advisory Committee, which stands for ‑‑ and you advocate for teens.


DENISE RORIE: We advocate for teens in Children's Hospital. We've been doing surveys about patient care and patient relationships with their doctors.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: You really are a voice for the teens, which is wonderful. And do you go and visit the teens on the floors at all?


DENISE RORIE: Yes, before parties, or if we're holding some type of event downstairs, we'll go upstairs and personally invite the teens and their families downstairs to come and have fun with us and dance. And they can ‑‑ we usually have games and we have DJs, and so it's a good time.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: How many people are on the committee, I'm just wondering?


DENISE RORIE: There's about eight to 10 people on the committee. All teens. Most of them go to Children's Hospital.

So they have a lot of insight into patient‑doctor relationships and how it's like to be a patient at Children's, which is a good perspective for us to have when we're discussing these types of things.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Denise and I have given a lot of presentations. Actually, I haven't given the presentations. I drive her to the presentations. And I just coach her through it.

But maybe Denise could talk about one of her favorite presentations. I don't know whether it's self‑esteem in the media or Internet safety.


DENISE RORIE: Yes. So one of the other big parts ‑‑ and one of my favorite parts about being a youth advisor is going out into the community and doing presentations. So we go to community centers, after schools, just regular community programs.

We also do conferences for young women. And that's really a chance for us to get our, and spread the knowledge that we're learning here at the center. I've given presentations on self‑esteem, Internet safety, nutrition and fitness, healthy relationships.

But I think one of our most popular presentations and one of my favorite presentations is self‑esteem in the media.

Our goal with our presentations is try to make them as interactive and fun as possible, but also get an important message across. So, for example, we try to incorporate discussion and then activities to represent the discussion.

So for self‑esteem, we first discuss self‑esteem, what it is, what it means to have good self‑esteem, what it means to have negative self‑esteem. Then we try to put that into perspective. So we do an activity called the tear it up activity where girls get the opportunity to kind of discuss some insecurity they have about themselves as well as things that they feel that hurt their self‑esteem.

And that kind of gives them a clear picture of what self‑esteem is and how it can be hurt. And then, as I said, it's self‑esteem and the media. So then we'll incorporate the media aspect. We'll discuss what is media, what are different types of media, and then we'll incorporate a magazine scavenger hunt where girls get to look through the magazines and they get to find ads or pictures of women where they think they're being portrayed negatively or positively.

And then we kind of come together at the end and discuss what we found and how we feel about this information. And then we kind of, at the end, we try to tie it together. Because this can be a kind of complicated concept for girls to comprehend. Especially at a young age. So we link them together by talking about the subliminal messages of the media and the subliminal messages that they see every day when they're watching TV or when they're reading magazines.

We also show them airbrushing websites where they can see how airbrushers, I guess, alter these pictures and then put them in magazines.

So this really helps the girls to understand that not everything they see in the media is real and that they should not compare themselves to people that they do see in magazines.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: That's great.


DENISE RORIE: So we also go to health fairs and there we share our information that we have on our website as well as promote the center and make people feel welcome to come by and stop by whenever they want to.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Denise just gave us a really good picture of one of the modules that they present out in the community. And I just want to say that this program has been so effective. We know that messages from peers to peers, works so much better than adults talking to peers.

When I observe them, the peer leaders giving presentations, you can hear a pin drop. So it's unbelievable the interaction that happens and the discussions and the questions and all of that. And just a lot of consciousness raising around certain issues.

I have to say that we're really proud that in nine years we have about four generations of peer leaders. All of these peer leaders have gone on to college. Denise right now is a freshman.




PHAEDRA THOMAS: Tell us where you go to school.


DENISE RORIE: I'm at the University of Massachusetts Boston campus, currently in the College of Management. But just starting off trying to see what I'm interested in.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: And as a young peer leader a couple years ago, you were mentored by some of the older peer leaders that worked here before.


DENISE RORIE: Definitely.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: They still keep in touch with us, which is great. And we meet a couple times a year for reunions and touch base with everybody. But it's been a great experience.

Did you want to talk a little bit about the newsletter and your column?


DENISE RORIE: Sure. So we have our quarterly newsletter, Teen Talk, which comes out each season. So we try to think of topics that are interesting at the moment. So, for example, over the summer we had some articles about ‑‑ I wrote an article about sun safety and how it's important to wear sunscreen and protect your skin in the summertime. Also, my Ask Nisey column is where we propose a question and then I answer it and give as much information as I can in a short kind of brief writing response.

Then we also had articles about cyber bullying, which is an important topic, and we talk about that at our safety on the Internet presentation. One of our former peer leaders wrote an article about that.

So it really depends on what we're interested in talking about. So, for example, my Ask Nisey column was about statistics with girls and sexually transmitted diseases. And so first I give some information and then I give some tips on how they can protect themselves and make sure that they're making the right decision. As well as we have like fun little articles that we have like a word search on here that make it fun and interactive as well as informative.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: What are the different modules that we have now?


DENISE RORIE: So we have self‑esteem in the media, fitness and nutrition, which is also very popular. We go out and do presentations what nutrition is here at work in the adolescent clinic. What's fun about that presentation is we talk about nutrition, but then we also talk about fun fitness, so ways that girls can take in shape and making sure they're taking care of their bodies, like having walking clubs or working out at home, working out with friends.

So that's one of the really important good presentations that we do. We also have safety on the Internet, which is also another fun and interactive presentation where we, you know, show stories of how the Internet can be dangerous but also how it can be fun.

Some of the things we talk about in that presentation do scare some girls because it is the reality about the Internet that you don't really know what's going on or who you're talking to or what that person looks like, and that you need to make sure that you're protecting yourself on the Internet.

So that's one of the other hot presentations that we'll be doing, good presentations, popular. And then we also have safety on the streets and healthy relationships, which is also an interesting presentation because, depending on which age group, we kind of modify.

If we're talking to younger girls, we're more apt to talk more about friendships. If we're talking with older girls, we'd like to talk more about boyfriend/girlfriend relationships. So we have to ‑‑ we definitely do a lot of modifying with our presentations depending on whether or not we're talking to younger girls or older girls and what's really appropriate for them and what's the message that we want to give them.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: What Denise is talking about is our Teen‑Safe Project and that was developed a couple years ago in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of Women's Health and the Adolescent Negotiation Skills Building.

And we set out to create four modules: Healthy relationships, safety in relationships, safety on the street and safety on the Internet.

We also wrote a facilitator's guide. And this entire, this curriculum in its entirety is on our website complete with all kinds of icebreakers and games that any educator, whether it be a group facilitator in a boys and girls club, a teacher, a healthcare provider or a parent, that has GIRL Scouts, a Girl Scout troop or something.

It's a guide with activities that they can download and use and reinforce a lot of these skills. I'm going to have Freedom talk to you about our Internet chats and how girls can benefit from talking to other girls about similar conditions.


FREEDOM BAIRD: Yes. Well, this is a good sort of follow‑up to talking about Internet safety, actually, because another way that we promote Internet safety is by providing a safe forum for some of our teen patients and teen readers on our website to talk about certain health conditions.

There are three medical conditions that we provide support for that manifest in adolescence. They are endometriosis, PCOS, which is polycystic ovary symptom, and MRKH, which is a congenital syndrome of the reproductive organs.

And what happened when the Center for Women's Health was first founded was that healthcare providers realized that there was a need to create support for these teen girls who were just finding out about their condition.

So, initially, in the days before the Internet, the support groups were offered in person, and it was hard to keep the attendance up. It was hard for the girls to come in.

So when the Internet came on the scene, we realized there was an opportunity to actually post chats and support for the girls online. That's when we started up our chat group. So we have three monthly chat groups. Each chat is moderated by a nurse, a doctor and a nutritionist.

And the girls are ‑‑ we have a way that the girls can log into the chat kind of through a private pathway. So they're protected in that way. We screen all the participants who take part in the chat to confirm that they actually have a diagnosis.

It's really remarkable to see what unfolds in these chats. We get to see these girls not only getting information from the medical professionals who are there at the chat, but also just providing support to each other, sharing stories about their experiences and really using the chat room in a way that's so helpful to them.

Since we've been building our chat mailing list, we have over 400 people total for these three different chats that we host every month. And the other thing, of course, that's amazing about it is that we have girls chatting not just from the United States but from other parts of the world as well.

The other night we were in a chat room and there was a girl from the UK there talking about PCOS. So that's another wonderful way that we're able to reach out to girls around the world.

Another thing that we offer on the website is just our regular mailing list, separate from our chats, which is a way that not only teen readers, but parents, health educators, healthcare providers and anyone else who is interested in teen health can sign up to be on our mailing list and get every other monthly updates from us about new content that we've posted to the site or new events that we're going to be participating in, about the conferences that we're going to be hosting. So that's a great way for us to keep in touch with our readers.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: As Freedom is talking to you about our chats, we want to tell you when the next chat dates are coming up. And we have a chat coming up next week, September 16th, which is the teen chat for MRKH.

MRKH stands for Mayer‑Rokitansky‑Kuster‑Hauser Syndrome. It's a congenital anomaly of the reproductive tract, and girls who have this condition greatly benefited from being able to talk with other teens with the similar condition.

These chats are very secure. They're moderated by myself, Dr. Laufer and oftentimes a social worker. Of course, we have a chat master who screens people as they come in. So it's very confidential. Girls have to be over 13.


DENISE RORIE: They have to be between the ages of 13 to 25 to participate.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Right. And the chats ‑‑ actually, the chats helped us think of a new idea and that was to create a conference for young women with MRKH. We have been talking online to girls and we thought wouldn't it be great to have a forum to have girls come and their parents come and meet each other. And we did just that.

Three years ago we had our first MRKH conference, and it was different than conferences that you might attend in the healthcare professionals. This was strictly for teens, families and friends.

And we held it here at Children's Hospital Boston. And we had, oh, I think the first year probably about 30 people attended, which was about 10 families.

And people came from all over the country. And this was open to the public. So it wasn't just patients that we see here. It was teens and families that have read our online health guides about MRKH or had attended the chats. And it was really one of the most rewarding things that I have done personally and professionally, and I'm sure the other faculty members as well, to be able to create a space and a place where kids could come and learn more about their diagnoses.

Dr. Mark Laufer spoke about MRKH in lay terms. We had networking groups and support groups for their teens. We had a lunch for the teens where teens could talk amongst themselves without the adults around. And we even had a workshop for dads only. Because dads are often left out of the communication with this particular diagnosis.

Another chat that we do once a month is the endometriosis chat. That's coming up on Tuesday, September 16th, and that runs 8:30 to 9:30. We also started our first endometriosis conference last year. And we also hold that here at Children's Hospital Boston. And many people from around the country have come to that conference as well. And it's been ‑‑ it was a wonderful opportunity.

What we'd like to do is give you an overview of the website and some of the health guides and tell you about the different categories of health guides that we have. They kind of fall under four or five different categories.


DENISE RORIE: So when you visit the site,, you'll see the categories we present our materials under are nutrition and fitness, sexuality and sexual health, general health and development, gynecology, emotional health. And we also have a section called Parent Guides which are where we cover certain topics in a voice that's really helpful to parents as well.

So in all of these sections we cover pretty much everything that teens are wondering about and needing to know about. So we have entire sections on puberty and menstruation, body development. We have sections on relationships and sexual health. We have sections on different gynecological issues that teen girls are encountering for the first time. Sections on emotional health such as depression, anger management, stress management.

And for the parents we have a lot of sections on talking to your teens about nutrition, talking to teens about certain vaccinations that they might be receiving, talking to them about eating disorders, other things like that.

So the website is really comprehensive, and we do get suggestions from our readers and from our patients who visit the clinic on new material from time to time. So we're constantly adding new material to the site. We pay attention to what's happening in the media and around the world as far as teens health.

So when something comes up, we try to address it with a carefully written and carefully researched health guide that will help teens understand a certain issue like the HPV vaccine. Another issue that's been in the press a lot lately, of course, is teen pregnancy.

So we've blogged about that. So we're always trying to keep up with what's happening out there in the real world in helping the teens negotiate all that information.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: That was great, taking our listeners through our website.

We have lots of opportunities on our website to learn about different health topics, as Freedom mentioned. And we also have, as I mentioned earlier in the broadcast, curriculum on teen safe issues. And we'll be posting some new curricula on nutrition and fitness.

One of our most recent initiatives is a cookbook that we wrote, our nutritionists who are fellows in our LEAH program worked for the last year and a half on analyzing many recipes that were contributed by staff and friends of the center.

We had created a cookbook about five years ago that has been very successful, and we got lots of responses from visitors to our website and readers of the cookbook to say this is great: We'd like some more information. We want more recipes, more ethnic recipes. We want more health guides in the cookbook, and we'd like to find out how to read a nutrition facts label.

So we spent a lot of time creating material on how to teach kids how to read a nutrition health label and to demystify the new food type pyramid and give them sample menus on how to plan healthy meals, not only at home but healthy snacking and healthy choices at school.

So we created our cookbook, which is about 200 pages. And we have recipes for breakfast. We have recipes for snacks. We have recipes for main meals. We call them main events, and dessert.

But there's also information on basic nutrition facts and cooking definitions and five simple ways to be a healthier you. There's also information about fitness and how to get going on a fitness plan and how to incorporate fitness into a healthy lifestyle.

We tell kids now with the new food guide pyramid, we ask them to tell us what is different about the new food guide pyramid as opposed to the old guide pyramid. And usually the response is that they notice that there's a stick figure walking up the pyramid. And we reinforce that it's very important to include fitness into their daily routine and their health.


FREEDOM BAIRD: Let's see, another feature that I don't want to leave out on the website that our teen readers love are our quizzes. We have about 40 quizzes on the site, on a range of different topics: Nutrition to safety, to all kinds of things, relationships. And they're simple quizzes that the teens can take and then get feedback right away about whether they're doing a good job getting enough calcium in their diet or whether they need to work a little bit harder to do that. And then, of course, we have links to our health guides, like our calcium health guide and nutritional health guide that give them concrete information about how they can actually boost their calcium intake. And the quizzes are always really popular on our site.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: So probably, just to summarize here, we're happy that you were able to join in, to listen to our podcast today about the Center for Young Women's Health at Children's Hospital Boston, our website and our teen brother website.




PHAEDRA THOMAS: And if you visit our website, you will see lots of information that hopefully will help you when dealing with teens and parents and your practice. Lots of health guides that you can feel free to download and give out to your families. Please tell them about the Internet chats. That's a great opportunity for teens to talk with other teens privately.

What else can we tell you? You can ‑‑ the girls can blog on our website. And, oh, do check out our new quick and easy recipe for teens cookbook.

So we would enjoy your feedback on our website. You can e‑mail us and give us your information. If you choose to use our information for educational purposes, just send us a quick e‑mail just requesting permission to use our material. They will respond to you very quickly.

Check our website for upcoming events. And do you want to say anything, Denise?


DENISE RORIE: For girls to blog or ‑‑ I would just say make sure that you get good, reliable information and make sure you keep yourself educated about important things that you need to know about to keep yourself safe. Make sure to ask questions and don't be too shy to say that you don't understand or that you need more information or help about something.

You know, there are people out here to support you. And we want all the young girls to know that our website is available to them whenever they need it. If they have any questions that they might be, you know, worried about or they don't feel really comfortable asking their parents about, they can go on our website and they can look at what they need to look at.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: I just wanted to also say that if anyone listening to the podcast is actually starting up their own kind of youth resources center, feel free to use us as a resource. We've had lots of great conversations with people starting up similar centers.

We've had a visiting doctor from Japan who was starting up a center there. And just anywhere, any city, anywhere around the country or around the world. We've had a lengthy experience with it, and we could probably provide you with some useful information about that.

So you can get in touch with us through the website,, or give us a call at 617‑355‑2994. And if you're in the Boston area feel free to come by and stop by and see what we're doing and see the great things that we're doing over here at the Center for Young Women's Health.


PHAEDRA THOMAS: Thanks for listening today. And now back to Morrisa.


MORRISA RICE: And I'd like to take some time to thank our speakers for doing such a wonderful job addressing the needs of young women and for providing an avenue for young girls via modern technology with safety in mind. That is such a valuable asset, via the chat, the newsletters, being able to access materials that are easy to comprehend and understand.

One more plug, just remember the next chat will be September 16th, 2008 and it is for ages through 13 through 25. I also, again, want to thank Ms. Denise for serving as such a great role model and being a peer leader. I really was very interested in the Tear It Up sessions with self‑esteem in mind as it relates to the media. Remember to definitely check out their cookbook which has been developed in‑house.

Lastly, I'd like to thank Madhavi Reddy, the project officer for the Center for Young Women's Health for bringing them to my attention to do this podcast. And I would be out of place if I did not thank our HRSA Office of Women's Health director Sabrina Matoff‑Stepp for her vision in assisting and organizing this podcast.

So, again, please make sure you visit to find out more information and if you're planning to start up your own website, to give them a call, they're more than willing to help you. Thank you and have a wonderful day.