Your health assessment – information for 13-18 year olds
Information for 13-18 year olds
What is a Health Assessment?
Your health is very important. As a Looked After Child you are entitled to a health assessment when you come into care, and you will be offered one every year until you leave care.
The health assessment is a regular check up; some young people prefer to call it this. It is a health chat with a Doctor or Nurse. It is not a test or exam and isn’t something to worry about. The health assessment check up is a time to ask any questions you have about your health.
The health assessment is important as it is a chance for the Doctor or Nurse to make sure you are getting the right support for your physical, emotional and mental health. They will give you advice and information about how to keep healthy.
Where and when?
The LAC health team are here to help you stay healthy. We organize your health assessments and can refer you to other services for advice if you need it.
At your first health assessment you will be seen by a Doctor. This takes place within a month of coming into care and is usually held at a health centre or hospital.
Following this you will be seen once a year for a review health assessment. This might be undertaken by a LAC Nurse but could also be your School Nurse. The Nurse will contact you and your Carer to agree the best time and place to be seen, this might be at home, school or at another location.
Will I be seen alone?
You can be seen alone if you want to. However if you’d prefer, your social worker, carer or key worker can be there too.
What happens during the assessment?
The Nurse or Doctor will ask you about your health and how you are getting on generally. They will offer to weigh and measure you to see how you are growing. The Doctor may listen to your heart using a stethoscope but you won’t need to get undressed.
This is also an opportunity to discuss anything you are worried about.
During the assessment you may be given information and support around a range of issues including:
- Healthy eating / healthy weight
- Your emotional and mental health
- Drugs and alcohol awareness
- Stopping smoking
- Relationships and sexual health
You can speak with the Doctor/Nurse confidentially. We will only share information with your social worker and carers if you agree to it; or unless we are worried about the safety and wellbeing of you or others.
When you are 17 you will be seen for your final health assessment.
This is of particular importance as you will find out lots of information that may be useful for your future.
When you turn 18 and become an adult you will need to know how to:
- Access your GP
- Know when to access A&E (Accident and Emergency services)
- How to register with a Dentist and an Optician.
- Check you are up to date with your immunisations.
The LAC Nurse can explain all this to you before you leave care and provide you with information, leaflets and mobile apps to help.
Once you turn 18 you will receive a Leaving Care Health Summary. This will sum up your health over the time since you’ve been in care, it is important you keep this safe.
This is YOUR health assessment so it is very important your voice is heard.
You can tell us where and what time you’d rather be seen, we’ll do our best see you at a time and place that suits you.
This leaflet has been developed in consultation with a group of children and young people from We Do Care.
If you want to talk to a member of the LAC Health team please call us on: 01296 566020