Adolescents and young adults in Philadelphia experience significant barriers in access to primary, mental, and sexual/reproductive healthcare. This challenge is magnified by disproportionate rates of poverty and housing instability as well as limited healthcare infrastructure built around the unique needs of Philadelphia’s youth. Compared to adults, these individuals have lower satisfaction with their healthcare services, are more likely to delay medical care, and are more likely to seek emergency room care. There is a need to better understand these barriers and restructure adolescent and young adult healthcare delivery to promote critical and cost-effective preventative medical and mental health services.
Through this Emerging Leader Fellowship, Cameron McConkey worked with Philadelphia FIGHT’s Youth Health Empowerment Project (Y-HEP) Health Center to lead a health needs assessment with youth ages 13-24 and develop a novel, community-based model for healthcare delivery that expands health access for Philadelphia’s most vulnerable youth. This project was youth-informed and conducted in partnership with a collaborative of community organizations.
Specifically, this Fellowship enabled Cameron to:
- Assess the need for a new, community-based model for healthcare delivery within Philadelphia FIGHT for adolescents and young adults through interviews, focus groups and surveys.
- Design a cost-neutral implementation plan for the community-based healthcare model in close partnership with Philadelphia FIGHT leadership.
- Support the launch of satellite services and develop a road map for future, community-based clinical operations.