Shifting the Paradigm in Oregon from Teen Pregnancy Prevention to Youth Sexual Health

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Abstract

Oregon's work on teen pregnancy prevention during the previous 20 years has shifted from a risk-focused paradigm to a youth development model that places young people at the center of their sexual health and well-being. During 2005, the Oregon Governor's Office requested that an ad hoc committee of state agency and private partners develop recommendations for the next phase of teen pregnancy prevention. As a result of that collaborative effort, engagement of young people, and community input, the Oregon Youth Sexual Health Plan was released in 2009. The plan focuses on development of young people and embraces sexuality as a natural part of adolescent development. The plan's five goals and eight objectives guide the work of state agencies and partners addressing youth sexual health. Oregon's development of a statewide plan can serve as a framework for other states and entities to address all aspects of youth sexual health.

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