A National Strategy to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. B. Support Promising Approaches


HHS-supported programs that include teen pregnancy prevention are just a part of the myriad and diverse teen pregnancy prevention efforts located in communities across the country. However, HHS plays an important leadership role in sponsoring innovative and promising strategies tailored to the unique needs of individual communities. Excluding HHS-funded programs that reach communities through states (e.g., Medicaid and the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant), HHS-supported programs that include teen pregnancy prevention reach an estimated 30 percent of communities in the United States. This represents about 1,410 communities across the country that receive funding from HHS. (See HHS Activities: Programs, Evaluation and Research for overview of HHS teen pregnancy prevention activities and the methodology used to develop this estimate).

The five principles of promising strategies described above are reflected in the teen pregnancy prevention programs HHS supports, including the key demonstration programs of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Office of Population Affairs (OPA). Additional funding for these programs in FY 1997 will enable communities across the country to expand their teen pregnancy prevention efforts.

The Community Coalition Partnership Program for the Prevention of Teen Pregnancy is one of HHS's most comprehensive and innovative teen pregnancy prevention programs. The CDC launched the program in 1995 by awarding grants to 13 communities with high rates of teen pregnancy located in 11 states. The funds have been used to strengthen existing community-wide coalitions and to develop community action plans. The next phase begins in FY 1997 when a total of $13.7 million is available to help the 13 community coalition partnerships implement their action plans and evaluate their impact, as well as to support related data collection, evaluation, and dissemination activities.

The Adolescent Family Life Program (AFL), created in 1981, supports demonstration projects, approximately one-third of which currently provide abstinence-focused educational services to prevent early unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, and HIV/AIDS. Most projects provide comprehensive and innovative health, education, and social services to pregnant and parenting adolescents, their infants, male partners, and their families, with a major emphasis on preventing repeat pregnancies among adolescents. In FY 1996, the AFL program funded 17 projects in 14 states, which will be continued in FY 1997. An additional $7.6 million in new funding will be used to enable smaller communities to develop and implement about 40 abstinence-based education programs and about 60 larger prevention demonstration projects, following the abstinence education definition in the welfare law.