Improving Child and Adolescent Health (Track 4)

All times are in Eastern Time (ET)

Many children and adolescents face barriers to good health which can impact them throughout their lifetimes. Effective laws and policies can strengthen programs to promote children’s well-being and ensure they get the best chance at health.
Topics explored in this track include access to care, adverse childhood experiences/trauma-informed care, obesity, vaping, health in schools, social and emotional learning, and injury prevention.

Healthy School Start Times for Adolescents: A Public Health Law and Policy Intervention

Concurrent Sessions 1: 4:00 pm – 5:15 pm, Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Aligning daily school start times with the circadian rhythms of adolescent students is an effective population-based policy intervention for improving adolescent health and academic performance. This session will explore the relationship between adolescent school start times, health, and academic performance; the current U.S. legal landscape governing school start time policy and potential law-based strategies for promoting healthier start times; and recent advocacy efforts to effect healthy school start time laws and policies for U.S. adolescent students.

Addressing Disrupters to Health and Education Outcomes: Multi-Disciplinary Interventions to Advance Health Equity

Concurrent Sessions 2: 10:30 am – 11:45 am, Wednesday, September 22, 2021

This panel explains why public health lawyers, social workers, health care providers, and educators are critical partners in creating safe, supportive, and just schools during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Specifically, this session addresses two “disrupters” to health equity: childhood adversity and racialized school disciplinary policies (punitive discipline and school policing); explores legal and policy solutions across disciplinary and professional silos; and offers recommendations for multi-disciplinary collaborations to advance the growing antiracist health equity agenda.

Why Public Education is a Matter of Public Health

Concurrent Sessions 3: 12:00 pm – 1:15 pm, Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Epidemiological literature has long recognized a consistent and significant association between formal educational attainment and individual health outcomes. More highly educated individuals are healthier and tend to live longer, with reduced risks of smoking, drug abuse, accidents, and chronic diseases. Schools also serve as a vital community hub for much-needed services. Despite federal laws that guarantee all children a free appropriate public education, major inequities exist. This session will explore legal issues at the intersection of schools and public health, such as school discipline reform; addressing the problem of chronic absenteeism; school nursing as an effective and underused tool for improving child and adolescent health outcomes; and innovative ways of delivering legal and other services to underserved students and their families in schools.

Communities Share Cross-Sector Data to Improve Child and Adolescent Health

Concurrent Sessions 4: 3:00 pm – 4:15 pm, Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Communities are connecting across sectors to learn more about complex social problems, the community and the individuals who live within them. This session will describe lessons learned from a community that shares data to improve health in schools and models from communities that are sharing data to identify and mitigate adverse childhood experiences. This session will also demonstrate how to navigate HIPAA, FERPA and state mental health law so that community data sharing may occur.

Optimizing Newborn Health through Legal Partnering: Lessons from Orange County

Concurrent Sessions 5: 4:30 pm – 5:45 pm, Wednesday, September 22, 2021

This session will convey and animate best practices gleaned from county-level participation in a national initiative that promotes the health of infants and their families through a unique cross-sector alignment. Representing both legal community experience and early childhood sector expertise, session presenters will share specific examples of how legal problem-solving strategies have promoted infant Medicaid enrollment in a large urban county. They will also share insight into how other communities might lay a foundation for similar innovation.

A Tale of Two Public Health Problems: Protecting the Public During the EVALI Outbreak and Youth Vaping Epidemic

Concurrent Sessions 6: 10:00 am – 11:15 am, Thursday, September 23, 2021

E-cigarettes are the most commonly used tobacco product among youth. The increase in youth e-cigarette use lead the Surgeon General to declare youth e-cigarette use an epidemic in 2018. In 2019, states began to report a national outbreak of lung injuries associated with e-cigarette, or vaping, product use that primarily affected adults. This session will discuss legislative and emergency executive actions state and local governments took to address these two public health issues.

Improving the Health of Children through Prevention Policies

Concurrent Sessions 7: 1:00 pm – 2:15 pm, Thursday, September 23, 2021

Children’s lives can be improved through the implementation of both state and national policies focused on prevention. This session will highlight the role of public health education within communities, which may improve health outcomes for children. Each of the presenters has expertise in the area of prevention policy as they relate to a variety of childhood experiences.

Intersection of Injury Prevention, Law, and Emerging Social Policy Issues

Concurrent Sessions 8: 2:30 pm – 3:45 pm, Thursday, September 23, 2021

This session will address an array of injury prevention issues with an emphasis on social policy implications of legal interventions. Topics will address: state minimum wage laws (and effects on occupational injuries); autonomous vehicle laws (including implications for safety, mobility, and testing); and ignition interlock laws for impaired driving prevention (including their impact on equity).