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Keeping healthy and well 14-25
Keeping healthy and being able to manage your own medical needs is an important part in preparing for adult life. Your GP will remain your main point of contact for all health matters.
You may have lots of health needs (sometimes called complex health needs or long term conditions) and there will be many changes to how you will receive your health support when you become an adult.
You may need medical help to support you to communicate with other people, with how you behave and any difficulties you may have in dealing with your feelings (sometimes called your mental health).
View services for keeping healthy and well 14-25
There are guides which tell health professionals (people paid to support you) how to do this. Two important ones are:
Young people with complex health needs
Up to age 16 or 18 a paediatrician usually coordinates the health needs of young people with multiple or complex conditions. After 18 this passes to your GP who will arrange any additional health support.
If you are a teenager with very significant health needs you should ask for an Adult Continuing Health Care Assessment. You should ask for this before you are 18 to allow enough time to complete the assessment and to have any discussions about the care you are entitled to.
What you need to think about
- Getting enough exercise and eating the right food
- Having someone to talk to
- Having a health check
- Seeing the same doctors
- Your sexual health
- Your Communication Passport
You should work with your GP and health care workers to make sure your healthcare plan meets your health needs.
Your healthcare plan should clearly show the health support you need in all settings, including: hospital, school, home, employment and when you are in the community.
The healthcare plan should show how you will receive your health support, including naming the key professionals involved in planning your transfer between children and adult health services and those responsible for delivering your health care support when you become an adult.
Your healthcare plan should make sure that, as far as possible, you are supported to manage your own medical condition and that you have plenty of time to meet all new staff so that you feel safe and confident with your new arrangements.
All healthcare plans need to be person-centred to you and your particular health needs. The health needs of young people will range across a variety of medical conditions such as: physical disabilities, learning disabilities, behavioural disabilities, mental health and life-limiting conditions. Your plan may involve a number of specialist health staff.
Learning disability annual health check
Your general practitioner (GP) may offer you a learning disabilities annual health check if you are aged 14 or above and have a moderate, severe or profound learning disability. The purpose of this check is to pick up any health concerns early enough to treat.
Find out more from the NHS about Learning disability annual health checks