September 14, 2022
A new website (iuveo.org) designed by and for teens has just launched, allowing teenagers and their peers to receive immediate health and wellness tips. “Information for the Evolving Teenager,” or IUVEO, was created to share information and resources about a variety of relevant medical conditions and situations that teenagers may experience at this stage in their lives. With easy to navigate pages dedicated to asthma, ADHD, vaping/smoking, diabetes, depression, and more, some pages also contain phone numbers for immediate assistance. The website also has one-page question prompt list for each topic. Teenagers can print a question prompt list, check the questions they want to ask the doctor, and use it during visits. The website team saw that in prior asthma work, teenagers found the question prompt lists extremely useful in helping them remember what questions they wanted to ask their doctor.
This website was funded by a grant from The Duke Endowment and The Eshelman Institute for Innovation (EII). To make this project a reality, the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy collaborated directly with two teen advisory boards. The boards included teens from two parts of the state, who contributed ideas for the content and layout of the website.
“The website was designed to empower teens to take charge of managing their own health conditions,” said Betsy Sleath, the Regional Associate Dean for Eastern North Carolina. “Originally the website was focused solely on ADHD and asthma. However, the teens wanted other areas on the website including mental health and substance use topics.”
The UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy also produced several videos on select topics that can be found on the website. These videos feature teens discussing topics such as stimulant misuse, asthma, and ADHD, with real-world examples.
“We wanted the browsing experience to feel exploratory for teens who may not always know what they are looking for,” said Charles Lee, MD, the lead technical advisor on the project. Lee, who served as the designer for the website and producer for the videos, went on to say, “the content topics were created with advice from teens and developed to address their needs – particularly those who have friends who may need help.”
Lee believes that the IUVEO website is a necessary resource for teenagers today. “There are not many credible sources of health information just for teenagers. Transitioning to adulthood is difficult for any teen, but those with health conditions struggle even more,” said Lee. “IUVEO is designed to help them as they grow to become adults.”
IUVEO: “Information for the Evolving Teenager” can be accessed at iuveo.org.
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