As advancements in technology are making it easier for physicians to diagnose and treat common ailments, cartoon emojis are opening the lines of communication between health care providers and the young adults that require treatment. According to a recent report, New York City hospitals are rolling out a new awareness campaign today that includes eggplant and peach emojis, encouraging young adults to seek assistance if they encounter sexual health issues. The campaign is part of the NYC Health and Hospitals effort to reach younger patients, which a specific focus on those between the ages 12 to 21.
“We’re taking all of the excuses for adolescents not to enroll in health care,” said Dr. Warren Seigel, the director of adolescent medicine at Coney Island Hospital.
The campaign plans to encourage these young adults to get tested for sexually transmitted diseases and to seek out a physician at any of the 20 YouthHealth centers situated across all five boroughs. When a user clicks on the colorful Facebook or Instagram images, they are quickly directed to the new Health and Hospitals website, where they can find a convenient location and check to ensure that they can receive certain treatments in certain facilities.
While some young adults may be aware of the treatment options and treatment facilities, many don’t know that some places guarantee confidential walk-in services. In 2015 alone, over 150,ooo adolescents were seen and treated by NYC Health and Hospitals. Under New York state law, children and young adults do not need parental permission for access to certain sexual, reproductive, and mental health care services.