Transitioning Your Arthritis and Rheumatic Disease Care to an Adult Provider

Patients with chronic illnesses, including arthritis and other rheumatic diseases, need guidance and a plan for the future. It takes effort on the part of family members and clinicians to make sure everyone is prepared to transition to an adult provider safely.

The goal of transition is to make adolescents as independent as possible. Sometimes, young adults may avoid or miss medical care during this time, which can worsen their condition and take away independence. 

Young adults with arthritis and other rheumatic diseases should learn to remain in close contact with their medical providers while becoming a responsible part of society at work and/or while attending school.

Transition should occur when your child is medically stable and prepared for the change. Be sure to schedule one final appointment at CHOP before transitioning, and please call our office if you have any questions or concerns regarding the process.

To further ensure a smooth transition, we’ve provided the following tips:

  • Encourage your child to be involved in his care. He should schedule his own appointments, request his own medication refills, and know to contact his provider. He should also understand his diagnosis thoroughly so he’s able to ask questions as needed.
  • Help your child find appropriate healthcare providers. If your child will be moving for school or work, we suggest she locates the following nearby:
    • Medical/Health centers
    • Hospitals
    • Labs
    • Pharmacies
    • Radiology sites
  • Inform those who need to know about your child’s medical condition. Your child may want to inform his school and/or employer of his diagnosis, allergies and medications. We can provide a letter if necessary. To obtain a copy of your child’s medical records please download this form (download the Spanish version). Some records can also be accessed through your MyCHOP account.