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Historically, multiple bureaus and programs at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health have worked to prevent the negative consequences of unhealthy relationships and sexual risk behaviors.
As a key primary prevention strategy to improve sexual health and well-being for all, the MDPH Healthy Relationships and Healthy Sexuality (HR/HS) Working Group was convened to promote and support multi-disciplinary efforts, not only to prevent negative health outcomes, but also to promote positive, healthy relationships and sexuality.
HR/HS Working Group Mission
- To support the integration of multi-disciplinary programming, practices and policy.
- To provide resources for understanding data trends and implementing promising practices, to support health promotion, risk reduction and disease prevention efforts.
- To promote positive sexual development across the lifespan in order to improve the health and well-being of all Massachusetts residents.
- Working definitions (PDF)
- Guiding principles (PDF)
- Healthy Relationships, Sexuality and Disability Resource Guide (PDF)
The promotion of healthy relationships, healthy sexuality, and sexual health requires a knowledge base grounded in family planning, infectious disease (including HIV/AIDS, STI, and viral hepatitis) prevention and treatment, substance use and abuse prevention and treatment, and violence prevention and intervention. Related programs at MDPH include:
- Coordinated School Health Program
- Family Planning Program
- Maria Talks! Statewide Sexual Health Helpline and Website
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases
- School Based Health Centers
- School Health Services
- Bureau of Substance Abuse Services
- Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program
- Violence Prevention and Intervention Services
This information is provided by the Family Planning Program within the Department of Public Health.