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MEHOP 1 of 7 Texas clinics in teenage pregnancy prevention initiative

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   The Matagorda Episcopal Health Outreach Program (MEHOP) is one of seven clinics participating in the Texas Youth Friendly Initiative (TYFI) through the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy.
   The campaign is an education and advocacy organization committed to reducing the rate of teen pregnancy throughout Texas and it announced the selection of seven clinics to participate in the first cohort of TYFI.
   These clinics will participate in an 18-month learning collaborative to implement standards of excellence based on research developed by the World Health Organization and adapted for Texas’ unique demographic and political context.
   The seven participating clinics include MEHOP, Bay City; HOPE Clinic, Houston; Interfaith Community Clinic, Conroe; Lone Star Family Health Center, Conroe; Special Health Resources of Texas, Longview; Wellness Pointe, Kilgore; and El Buen Samaritano, Austin.
   TYFI aims to help clinics across the state become clinical centers of excellence in adolescent health.
   International research stresses that the most effective prevention of unintended teen pregnancy comes when youth receive regular services, such as annual well-visits, where they can be screened for a number of risk factors including those associated with their reproductive health and contraceptive needs.
   “In Texas, it is estimated that more than 1 million youth do not have access to healthcare,” says Dr. Gwen Daverth, President and CEO, Texas Campaign. 
   “In addition, Texas has the most barriers to accessing confidential healthcare for teens. Because Texas laws are complex and difficult to follow, medical professionals often report not understanding under what circumstances they are allowed to treat youth, which blocks many young men and women from accessing care.”
   The Texas Youth Friendly Initiative will increase the number of youth accessing high-quality comprehensive health homes by reducing community barriers for youth to access affordable health care; creating and operationalizing a statewide standard for youth-friendly services; developing and implementing a clinic-level system transformation approach; and increasing collaboration between youth-serving organizations and health care providers.
   Project Partners include: The Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, Cardea Services, People’s Community Clinic, Baylor Teen Health Clinic, and University of Michigan – Adolescent Health Initiative. 

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