Hot Topics Sessions

Each Hot Topics session includes three twenty-minute presentations (15 minutes for presentation, followed by 5 minutes for questions).

Hot Topics I: Friday, March 11       2:45 – 4:15 p.m.


Whoops Proof Birth Control: Communicating with Young Women about IUDs and the Implant
Katy Suellentrop, MPH

Description: Learn about groundbreaking new research from The National Campaign and Smart Design on how to communicate about IUDs and the implant with young women in a way that resonates and is effective. Participants will also have the opportunity to learn how these insights have been applied to an advertising campaign aimed at young women. 

Learning objectives:
  • Describe up to nine key insights gleaned from women themselves that can be used to re-shape strategies for communicating about IUDs and the implant with young women.
  • Identify at least three ways that existing communications about IUDs and the implant fail to resonate with young women.
  • Understand how local communities are using the insights uncovered in this research to implement a marketing campaign.

Why Texting Matters
Bob Filbin, Chief Data Scientist

Description: Crisis Text Line is a 24/7 service for people in personal crisis by text. Since launching in August of 2013, volunteer Crisis Counselors have exchanged over 13 million messages with people in crisis. Crisis Text Line uses data in two ways: (1) internally, to improve the quality of the service, and (2) externally, to improve the crisis space as a whole. Researchers can now apply for access to the largest crisis data set in the country.

Learning objectives:
  • The unique value of a crisis text line for adolescents
  • How being a tech and data-first crisis service leads to better care for users
  • How to apply for access to Crisis Text Line's Dataset as a researcher

Should We Ban Tackle Football?
Albert C. Hergenroeder, MD, FSAHM

Description: This talk will review the head injuries associated with tackle football and their short and long-term implications.

Learning objectives:
  • Describe the prevalence of head injuries in student athletes who play football
  • Understand the implications of head injuries sustained by football players
  • Address potential modification to make football participation safer for young athletes

Hot Topics II: Saturday, March 12       9:30 – 10:30 a.m.

The Dark Web: All the Drugs You Ever Dreamed About, and More!
Seth Ammerman, FAAP, FSAHM

Description: The Dark Web is a growing underside of the internet, and is used primarily for illegal and criminal activities. Commerce in drugs, both legal and illegal, is a particular focus of the Dark Web. Transactions on the Dark Web are very difficult to trace and ensure high levels of anonymity, which is appealing to purchasers including adolescents. This hot topic session will provide an overview of the Dark Web as well as resources to learn more about it.

Learning Objectives:
  • Describe the differences between the Surface Web, the Deep Web, and the Dark Web
  • Understand TOR -- The Onion Router
  • Identify specific web sites that provide information about the Dark Web, including Reddit and

The Global Refugee Crisis
Susan Martin, MA, PhD

Description: The presentation will discuss the global refugee crisis, with particular focus on Syrian refugees and displaced persons. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees reports a global population of 60 million refugees and displaced persons, the highest it has counted since the end of World War II. The largest crisis is related to the Syrian conflict. There are currently about 8 million internally displaced persons  within Syria, 4 million refugees in neighboring countries and about 180,000 Syrian asylum seekers in Europe. The presentation will examine the causes of the global refugee crisis, discuss current responses, and explore prospects for the future.

Learning Objectives:
  • To understand the causes and consequences of global refugee movements;
  • To assess the principal obstacles to the protection of refugees and displaced persons;
  • To articulate policy options for improving responses for refugees and displaced persons

Is Everyone on the Autism Spectrum? Clinical Implications of Changes to Diagnostic Criteria and Prevalence Rates
Kelly Sheperd, MA, PhD

Description: The prevalence rate of autism has increased over 600% in the last 20 years, leaving many questions to explain this rapid increase, such as whether this change is an epidemic of disease or discovery. This "Hot Topic" will discuss possible explanations for the increased prevalence rates as well as implications to clinical practice

Learning Objectives:
  • To understand the changing prevalence and contributing factors
  • To summarize and understand the implications of changes to diagnostic criteria on diagnostic practices
  • To discuss the effect of media and popular culture of perceptions of autism

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