Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

Core competencies in adolescent health and development for primary care providers

Including a tool to assess the adolescent health and development component in pre-service education of health-care providers


Publication details

Number of pages: 58
Publication date: 2015
Languages: English, French, Spanish
WHO reference number: 978 92 4 150831 5


Core competencies latest!


At the heart of every health system, the workforce is central to improving health. A wide range of professionals are involved in health care for adolescents at the primary and referral levels, and progress towards universal health coverage for adolescents will require renewed attention to their education. Training programmes need to be re-oriented from an acute and episodic care model to a chronic and preventive care model. This shift highlights the need for designing competency-based educational programmes that emphasize the developmental and contextual aspects of adolescent health, and enhance competencies in consultation, interpersonal communication and interdisciplinary care.

The WHO document “Core competencies in adolescent health and development for primary care providers” aims to help countries develop competency-based educational programmes in adolescent health and development in both pre-service and in-service education. In addition, it provides guidance on how to assess and improve the structure, content and quality of the adolescent health component of pre-service curricula. By fostering the capacity of health-care providers in adolescent health care and development, the document supports the implementation in countries of the Global Standards for Quality Health-Care Services for Adolescents.

Related publications and resources