Transition to Adult Care
As your teen becomes a young adult, they will go through many changes. Your Children’s Health Care Team will work with you and your teen to prepare them for their changing health care needs as a young adult. This process is called pediatric to adult transition.
It is important to start the transition process from pediatric to adult health care early. Your Health Care Team will work with your teen to meet their personal needs.
Early Transition: Ideally Age 14-15
Knowledge of Health Condition and Medications
Can your teen:
- Explain their health condition?
- Give their medical history?
- Explain the signs and symptoms of a worsening health condition?
- Verbalize names, how much to take, and purpose of each medication?
- Explain the medical devices (wheelchair, vent, glucose monitor,etc) they need?
Middle Transition: Ideally Age 15-17
Manage Health Condition Independently
Does your teen:
- Ask questions and talk to their health care team?
- Know the difference between pediatric and adult care cultures?
- Know how to refill their medications?
- Know who is part of their health care team?
- Set up appointments with little or no help?
- Arrange for a ride for appointments?
Engagement in Health Behaviors:
Does you teen:
- Know the importance of taking their medications?
- Understand healthy choices and unsafe behaviors?
- Know how to get mental health care if needed?
Late Transition: Ideally Age 18-21
Knowledge of Health Insurance and Resources
Does your teen:
- Know the types of health insurance?
- Have a plan for keeping their health insurance?
- Understand their legal rights as a patient?
- Sign written consents for medical treatment and release of information forms?
- Know how to fill out or reapply for Supplemental Security Income if needed?
- Have a plan for the future? Will they go to school or work?
- Know how to find resources and accommodations for school or work?
- Have someone they can ask for help when needed?
- Have an adult provider for all their health care needs?
Accommodations: A reasonable adjustment to a job or school environment that makes it possible for someone with a disability to perform job duties or school work.
Adult Provider: A doctor that provides healthcare services to anyone over the age of 18.
Independent: Doing something with little or no help/assistance from other people.
Medical Devices: Equipment designed to aid in the diagnosis, monitoring or treatment of health conditions (wheelchair, vent, glucose monitor, etc.).
Release of information form: A form signed by you that informs you of your privacy rights and allows you to give your healthcare team permission to share your health information with your family or other people, if you choose to.
Sign: Body changes that tell you something’s not right that can be seen or measured by another person (color, temperature, blood pressure).
Symptom: Body changes that tell you something’s not right that can only be felt by yourself (pain, dizziness, sleepiness, upset stomach).
Transition: The process of moving from pediatric health care to adult health care.
Written Consent: A form signed by you giving healthcare team permission to treat you, share your health information with others for treatment, and making sure you are aware that you are responsible for payment.
Has your child:
- Found an adult provider for all of their health care needs?
- Checked to see if the adult provider accepts their insurance?
- Scheduled an appointment with their adult provider(s)?
- Checked to see if their pediatric provider has spoken to their adult provider?
- Signed a release for their medical records to be sent to their new provider?
Condition-Specific Transition Processes
View the departments below to learn about their transition process.
Helpful Transitioning to Adult Care Links
- Health Insurance Marketplace
- Supplemental Security Income
- Texas Health Insurance Premium Payment (HIPP)
- Texas Health Options
Medical Decision Making