Your Son Or Daughter Will Be 18 Years Old Soon

Your son or daughter will soon become eighteen years old. At age 18, they will be considered an adult in the eyes of the law. The first thing that probably comes to mind is that at 18 they have the right to vote but you also need to know that your son or daughter will become responsible for their own personal health information and medical decisions. This means that we can not share any of their personal health information with anyone including their parents.

We understand that you may want your son or daughter to share their private health information with you but this decision is theirs. We know this is a huge transition since you as the parent were in charge of their health since they were born.

If your son or daughter would like to share their health information with you, at age 18, he or she can sign our Authorization to Disclose Protected Health Information form. We do want to be very clear that this is their personal health information and they do not have to share it with anyone. If they choose not to share their protected health information, we can not disclose any medical information to you even though you are the parent.

We realize that most of you are used to being in charge of your son or daughters health care needs but now they are in charge. Your son or daughter are gaining more independence in their lives and they should start taking on more responsibilities when it comes to their medical history. This means you should prepare by having a conversation with them regarding their health. Make sure they know their allergies, what medications they take, how to request a refill, and that they understand any medical conditions that they may have. They should also be aware that if they do not understand, they can ask their doctor to explain. Make them aware that they can confide in their doctor about anything including bullying and sexuality concerns or questions. Remind them to carry urgent treatments with them like Epi pens or inhalers.

We suggest that your son or daughter try calling our office to schedule their next appointment and then check themselves in at our front desk. They should feel free to bring a list of questions with them that they want to ask the doctor. They should also know the details of their current insurance plan and carry their insurance card with them.

Turning 18 is a huge transition for both you and your son or daughter. We hope this letter has made you think about this upcoming transition and discuss it with your son or daughter before they turn eighteen. Please feel free to talk to your doctor about this upcoming transition at your next visit.

We look forward to continue to support your son or daughter through this exciting change.

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