When a child is away at school and falls ill or otherwise needs medical attention (including for mental health purposes), most parents assume that they will be contacted and will have all the rights and responsibilities to direct care. You may be surprised to know that an 18 year-old is protected under federal HIPAA law: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. This means medical professionals will require a release signed by the child—or worse, a court order–before sharing any health care information or records with a parent.
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