El Rio’s new Reproductive Health Access Project

The new El Rio Reproductive Health Access Project (RHAP) is a grant-funded project to ensure that all young people in Tucson have access to the reproductive health care they need, over their lifetime. Our work begins and ends with respect for young people.

The El Rio RHAP Youth Leadership Team (YLT) is comprised of 15 young people ages 14-24 from Tucson. As youth partners, they receive extensive training in reproductive and sexual health in order to successfully design and lead educational workshops in the community for Tucson’s most vulnerable young people. The YLT hosts twice monthly Pizza Protection Parties and Reproductive Health Clinics where attendees receive pertinent information on reproductive health and can see a provider the same day or within 24 hours to address their health needs. Virtual visits via video or text with providers are also available.

Pizza Protection Parties are held on various days throughout the month in partnership with youth-serving organizations in Tucson and Reproductive Health Clinics are being held the last Wednesday of each month from 2:30-6:30 p.m. at El Rio’s El Pueblo clinic located at 101 W. Irvington. These events are for TEENS ONLY and presented by TEENS ONLY to create a safe and welcoming space. A provider is available in on-site at both events to answer questions and see attendees the same day or within 24 hours.

El Rio Health Center also offers a TEEN ONLY clinic Thursdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at its Congress location, 839 W. Congress Street.

The El Rio RHAP is launching a TEEN ONLY hotline which will go live in March 2018. The TEEN ONLY line is a designated telephone number for teens 520-AZ-SHINE which routes directly to El Rio’s patient communications team; however, teen calls are prioritized, reducing wait times, and staff trained specifically to work with teens field these calls. Teens are connected with teen-friendly providers via same-day appointments, walk-in appointments, appointments within 24 hours, and virtual health appointments via video or text messaging. Call center staff also arrange transportation for teens who need it via Uber and Lyft.

To learn more about participating on the El Rio RHAP Youth Leadership Team, co-hosting a Pizza Protection Party or attending a Reproductive Health Clinic, please contact Joy Baynes, FNP, via text at 520.331.5965 or email at joyb@elrio.org. Workshops creating youth-adult partnerships within your organization are available as well. Find us on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat at El Rio Rhap. Current donors to this new program include: Advocates for Youth, Cenpatico Integrated Care , Health Net of Arizona, and Tohono O’odham Gaming Enterprise. The impact of youth-led movements