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Gateway Health for Teens and Youth
Stay on Your Game!
Know your game plan for good health.
Although teens and young adults are often healthy, you still need to take care of your health. See your doctor each year to stay well. What you need to know about good health starts here. Read on!
It is important for you to see your doctor, or Primary Care Provider (PCP), once a year, even if you do not feel sick. Your PCP helps you stay healthy over time because they can spot health problems before they begin. You can also ask your PCP any questions you may have. Here are some things you can talk to your doctor about:
- How to be healthy
- Eating habits and physical activity
- Sex and birth control
- Other doctors you may want to see
- Drug or alcohol use
- Tobacco use
Your health information is confidential. This means that what you talk about with your doctor or other health professionals cannot be shared with anyone but you and sometimes your parent or guardian. In Pennsylvania, you can ask that certain types of information is not shared with your parents or guardians. This kind of information can include:
- Birth control and counseling
- Emergency contraception (also known as the “morning after pill” or Plan B)
- Pregnancy tests
- Prenatal care
- STD testing and treatment
There are some cases when your information could be shared without your consent. This could be when:
- You go to the hospital for mental health treatment (this is called “inpatient care”). This applies if you are 14 to 17 years old.
- Your parent or guardian admits you for mental health inpatient treatment. In this case, the doctor could see your old mental health records.
- You are a victim of a crime. The hospital must report the crime to the police.
- You are a victim of child abuse. The doctor must report this to Childline.1
1. Care: minors’ access to confidential health care in Pennsylvania. (2014, March). Retrieved from http://www.aclupa.org/our-work/duvall-reproductive-freedom-project/minorsaccesstoconfidential/referencecardminorsaccesst/