A letter to teens
A memo to our teen patients
We have enjoyed being your doctors and nurse practitioners so far and would like to continue to provide your healthcare. You may feel that our office has too many young children for you to feel comfortable. Remember, young children get sick more often and have checkups more often than you do. We have many teen patients, but like you, they usually just don’t need to see us very much.
Now that you are older, we would like you to become more responsible for your healthcare. At your visits, we would prefer that you, not your parent, answer our questions regarding your health. We also expect you to know what medicines you are taking, how to take them, and the reason you are taking them. If you don’t know these things, please ask us. If your parent or guardian sends you in to see us, make sure you understand why they made the appointment.
We at Kiwi Pediatrics also believe in preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. Some of these diseases can leave a permanent impact on one's overall health and some can show no symptoms. As part of our routine preventative healthcare screenings we will test for chlamydia and gonorrhea on all patients that are 15 years of age and older. It is advisable to check with your insurance carrier regarding coverage of these services.
Authorization To Treat: We need permission from your parent/guardian to treat you for medical problems. If you come by yourself for an appointment, please bring a note giving us this authorization to treat you. There is an exception to this requirement when your problem is related to sexual issues, mental health, drugs or alcohol. These are called “sensitive services” and can be treated without parental consent. “Sensitive Services” are confidential except in instances where there is an immediate threat to your life. Unfortunately, sometimes billing can be a problem in keeping things confidential. If billing is a problem, we can refer you to clinics that won’t bill your parents or their insurance. We can also help you sign up for “sensitive services” through Medi-Cal.
Common Teen Concerns: In addition to the usual health concerns, we can help you with your concerns about acne, diet, puberty, menstrual problems, wheezing with exercise, chest pains, headaches, stomach problems and sleep problems. We can prescribe contraception (birth control) and emergency contraception (pills to be taken within 72 hours of unprotected intercourse). We can test you for sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy. We also help with stress-related problems, stopping smoking, depression and issues of sexuality (Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Trangender).