San Antonio Physician Receives Public Health Award at American Academy of Family Physicians Annual Meeting
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5222
Realini, president of the Healthy Futures non-profit, has dedicated herself to empowering the young people of San Antonio to make informed, healthy decisions. Her efforts focusing on teen pregnancy prevention and sexual education have had a significant impact in her community.
San Antonio has experienced some of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the nation, but the public health programs developed by Realini have helped to reduce those rates by more than 20 percent.
Realini devoted herself to public health in 1997, when she began her work with the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District. There she founded Project WORTH (Working on Real Teen Health), an outreach program emphasizing abstinence, parent communication and healthy youth development.
Realini also authored BIG DECISIONS, an educational curriculum for 7th through 12th grades that promotes abstinence as a teen’s healthiest choice while also providing important information for teens that become sexually active.
Each year, these programs’ messages of abstinence and healthy decision making reach thousands of youths and their parents. In 2007, Project WORTH presented to more than 6,400 teens. The BIG DECISIONS curriculum has been implemented in Houston, Austin, Corpus Christi, San Marcos, and Brackettville, as well as in San Antonio.
In her role with Healthy Futures, Realini has developed the Healthy Futures Alliance, a community coalition devoted to reducing teen and unplanned pregnancy in San Antonio and Texas. The Healthy Futures Alliance is one of three state and local projects nationwide to receive a grant from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy for innovative approaches to reducing unplanned pregnancy.
Realini has been recognized with numerous awards and honors including the 2007 Texas Academy of Family Physicians Public Health Award and the Lewis W. Mondy Award from the Women’s Health and Family Planning Association of Texas.
Before entering the realm of public health, Realini served as faculty and residency director for the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. In 2004, the UTHSCSA Department of Family and Community Medicine instituted the Janet P. Realini Award for Excellence in Psychosocial Medicine, which is given each year to a graduating resident.
Realini has been an active member in a number of professional organizations on the local, state and national levels. She chaired the Texas Medical Association’s Committee on Maternal and Perinatal Health and the Texas Department of Health’s Family Planning Advisory Committee. Realini was the first woman to sit on the American Board of Family Medicine and was elected vice president of the board in 1990.
Realini received her medical degree from the University of California in San Francisco and undergraduate degree from University of California in Berkeley. She received her masters in public health from the University of Texas School of Public Health.
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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 110,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is 240 million office visits each year — nearly 87 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.
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