Sample Parent Letter (Letter of Introduction)
Dear Parent of a Teenager:
Welcome to our Clinic. We have a special program here for teenagers, ages 11 to 19.
As doctors and nurses, we want the best health for your teenager. A lot of good things happen between the ages of 11 and 19--at home, at school, at work, and with friends. And, as we all know, some not so good things can happen too. We are here to offer the best health care to your teenager.
Some of the important areas of teen health include:
In order to best take care of your teenager we offer these services:
- Education. We have health education materials for your teenager which discuss issues such as growing up, puberty, eating right, smoking and drinking, sex, acne, exercise, etc. These materials will help your teenager learn about good health. Sometimes talking to us makes it easier for your teenager to discuss the subject at home with you.
- Questionnaire. We give each of our teens a questionnaire to fill out about their health and their health concerns. We want them to fill out the questionnaire privately, so they can give us honest answers.
- Confidentiality. We offer your teenager "confidential" services. "Confidential" means if a teenager tells us something, we don't tell anyone else, including the parents or school. There is an exception to this: if we think there is a serious threat to the teenager's health, then we will tell the teen's parents (we let the teens know about this exception beforehand).
Confidentiality is important in taking care of teens because many teenagers won't tell their provider the truth if they think it will get back to their parents. And, in Minnesota, it is the state law to keep services for teens confidential (for reproductive health, mental health, and chemical use).
- Visits with a nurse and doctor. We will see a teenager by themselves if they come to our clinic for confidential services. This gives them a chance to learn how to take care of their health. And it gives them a chance to talk to us privately, if they want to. Again, we will always encourage teenagers to talk to a parent about important health issues.
- Education for Parents. We have information for parents about normal teen development and teen problem areas such as diet, birth control, STDS, drugs, puberty, and sexuality.
We look forward to taking care of your teenager. Please feel free to talk to us about any concerns you have about your teen. A lot of things happen as they grow....
Minnesota Health Improvement Partnership Adolescent Health Services Action Team in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health, Updated 2006