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Transitioning to Adult Care

Transitioning Adolescents

  • Begin discussing a transition plan with provider between ages 16-17.
  • Talk with your provider about any concerns you may have regarding the transition to adulthood.
  • Ask your adolescent what level of care they would like to consider as it relates to their mental health (including prescriptions) as they transition to adulthood.
  • Begin to outline the roles and responsibilities between parent and adolescent.

Transitioning Adolescents with Special Needs

  • At 15-16 years old, discuss if adult psychological testing is needed.
  • If it might be helpful for your child, consider having them continue school until age 21; IEPs often provide vocational and other assistance. Ask your IEP team about your school’s opportunities.
  • Discuss upcoming changes with your adolescent beginning around age 16. Begin looking into an adult primary care physician and other specialists they need.
  • Begin discussing future appointments, how to make appointments, who will attend them, and how to make medical decisions.

Adolescents in the high school years are thinking about life plans and dreams.

As they begin making these plans, it’s important to manage their medical and mental health needs as they transition to adulthood. At St. Luke’s Children’s Center for Neurobehavioral Medicine, we most often transition patients at age 18. In specific circumstances we may wait until age 21 years.

Begin discussing transition with your provider and care coordinator between age 16-17 years, to identify service needs and make the transition as smooth as possible.