Empowering Teens to Take an Active Role in Care

Innovative website helps youth ask the right questions to better manage their own care

Story by Kelly Collins | Published September 10, 2022

Teens living with conditions like asthma and ADHD aren’t great at taking an active role during doctor’s visits. A team at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy believes changing that is a matter of asking the right questions.

iuveo.org site demo picture

The website is already impacting outcomes for teens with chronic conditions.

Betsy Sleath, PhD, received a generous grant from The Duke Endowment and the Eshelman Institute for Innovation to develop a website for teens with ADHD and asthma (www.iuveo.org). Working with a group of teens and parents, they produced a series of educational videos in English and Spanish encouraging teens to ask their providers questions from question prompt lists.

“We want to find ways to activate the teens and get the parents to be quieter,” said Sleath. They found that the videos and prompts lists made teens more effective at managing their conditions, which resulted in better control of their condition, fewer missed school days, and better quality of life.

The teens on the advisory board requested additional prevention content on substance abuse and vaping. The Dogwood Health Trust stepped up as a partner and funded a continuation of this important work. Dr. Sleath’s team is working closely with partners in Western North Carolina including Rez Hope, Henderson County Hope Coalition, and BLiNK, Inc. to develop this content for the website and to share on social media as well as with other health care providers.