APHA Annual Meeting and Expo

November 4th, 2017 – November 8th, 2017
Georgia World Congress Center & Omni Atlanta Hotel at CNN Center
Atlanta, Georgia

4350.0: Building a youth e-cigarette prevention community of excellence in Central Texas

Tuesday, November 07th • 02:50  – 03:10 PM
Dr. Steven Kelder, The University of Texas School of Public Health

E-cigarette use among U.S. youth has increased rapidly in recent years to become the most commonly used tobacco product by middle and high school students. According to the 2015 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 45% of high school students have tried e-cigarettes and 24% are current users. Most e-cigarettes contain nicotine, a highly addictive substance that can harm adolescent brain development. In response to this emerging public health crisis, the CATCH Global Foundation is collaborating with local partners to create a Youth E-Cigarette Prevention Community of Excellence in five counties in Central Texas. Over the next two years, 50 schools will receive training, curriculum, and other resources to prevent e-cigarette use among approximately 25,000 6-8th grade students. Developed by researchers from the University of Texas School of Public Health, the prevention program is designed to increase students’ knowledge and motivations to abstain from e-cigarettes and build skills for resisting peer and media influences. A feasibility pilot study, which included over 2,000 students in 26 schools, led to increased knowledge of e-cigarettes and their health effects and increased awareness of the social influences that promote use. Additionally, 86% of students agreed that they were less likely to use e-cigarettes as a result of the program. As of February 2017, 25 Central Texas schools have begun implementing the e-cigarette prevention program, providing a replicable model for other communities seeking to reverse the rise of e-cigarette smoking rates among adolescents. Preliminary outcome data from these schools will be presented.

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