Education and Health Care Transition
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What is Education Transition?
Transition refers to a change in status from behaving primarily as a student to assuming emergent adult roles. These roles include employment, participating in postsecondary education, maintaining a home, becoming appropriately involved in the community, and experiencing satisfactory personal and social relationships.
Transition planning should begin no later than age 14 (legally age 16 according to IDEA) to assume maximum amount of responsibility for the planning. The transition planning should be done during one of the annual IEP meetings with the entire IEP team there to work together to begin the transition process with the family and student.
What is Health Care Transition?
This transition process refers to preparing the patient to become more responsible for his or her own health care. This is a gradual process that should be started in early teen age years and several years before the transfer of care.
Youth with special health care needs receive the services necessary to make transitions to all aspects of adult life, including adult health care, work, and independence. However, we should note that health care transition is not mandated by legislation.
What is Education Health Care Transition (EdHCT)?
Education and Health Care transition are two distinct but parallel processes that impact a common population, have complementary and common goals but are separated by laws, policies, rules, regulations, professional perspectives and organizational missions.
Beyond the traditional transition educational skills in moving from secondary school to postsecondary or work settings, students with special health care needs (SHCN) need to learn how to manage their health in work and postsecondary school settings, navigate the adult health care system, and to self-advocate for their health needs.
As more educational systems are assisting students with SHCN, educators and medical personnel must collaborate. This requires that each understand the values and goals of the other, as well as having working knowledge of the legal issues and professional language.