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Planning for Transition

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Parents and caregivers can help youth learn how to transition over time...


Youth can start planning for transition as young as 13 or 14 years old. Start by letting your doctor know that you want to be more independent.

Steps to take toward transition

By age 13 or 14, you should:

  • Learn about your health condition(s) and any special health care needs
  • Learn about health care transitions and how they will affect you as you grow older
  • Make a list of things you need to stay healthy

By age 15 or 16, you should:

  • Start working on managing your health care
  • Make your own medical appointments and keep track of them

By age 17 or 18, you should:

  • Ask your doctor to suggest some adult doctors for you
  • Learn about your health insurance coverage
  • Explore options for adult health care – both primary and specialty care
  • Establish a support system (family, friends, teachers)
  • Register to vote

By age 21 (and older), you should:

  • Focus on adult needs, such as independent living, employment, relationships, and finances
  • Know what type of adult provider you want to transfer your health care to
  • If you haven't chosen an adult doctor, make appointments to meet and choose your doctor(s)
  • Update your insurance information

Source: Boston Children's Hospital.

While there are lots of resources to help you plan, here are two great tools:

Transition Health Plan for Youth with Disabilities and Their Families  

CSHCS-Transition Guidebook CoverTransition Planning: A Guidebook for Young Adults and Families> 

For more tools and resources about transition, visit Got Transition.