Health 2020 approach to adolescent health

Health 2020, the recently adopted European policy framework, supports action across the whole of government and society for health and well-being. It focuses on fostering not only collaboration among government agencies and with the health sector but a whole-of-society approach to health, engaging the private sector, civil society, communities, individuals and the mass media.

This intersectoral coordination and multidimensional integration allow the health sector and government to collaborate with those who are closest to the situation at hand. In this case, approaching adolescent health through Health 2020 will enable countries throughout the WHO European Region to create and maintain health services that remain relevant to and accessible by their adolescent populations.

The latest report from the WHO collaborative cross-national study Health Behaviour in School-aged children (HBSC), “Social determinants of health and well-being among young people”, provides data that can be useful for developing adolescent health policy in line with Health 2020. The HBSC study examines the physical and mental health of children and teenagers, focusing on the demographic and social influences on the health of young people aged 11, 13 and 15 years in nearly 40 countries across the WHO European Region and North America.