Talking to your new healthcare team
You may know your team (such as, consultant, junior doctor, nurse specialist, technician, psychologist, dietician, physiotherapist) from the child services very well so it can seem a little scary moving and getting to know a new team. Just like getting to know anyone new, this will take a little time. Here is some advice from other young people who have already made the transition to adult services.
- Sometimes health care professionals might use terms that you are not familiar with. If there is anything you do not understand don’t be afraid to ask your doctor or other professional to explain it to you. It is their job to help you to understand everything.
- Write down your questions and bring them with you to your clinic visit.
- Use a notebook or your phone to jot down any important information and phone numbers that you might get from the team.
- If you like, bring someone (parent/guardian, family member or friend) with you for support and for an extra pair of ears (to remember what was said).
- If you have someone with you but want to ask the medical team something personal just ask the person to wait outside the room until you call them.
- Be open and honest and tell your team everything. You are an expert on your health so the more information you give them the better they can meet your needs.
- Remember that your health care team has heard or seen it all before.
- Find out who you should contact in case you have any unanswered questions.
- Your team are there to work on your health care with you, so trusting them and building a good relationship with them will be beneficial to both of you.
If you are finding it difficult to talk to your health care team, don’t suffer in silence, speak with a family member or someone you trust. They can speak up on your behalf at your next hospital or clinic appointment.