Radnor News / Blog


posted by: Radnor Financial Advisors

Healthcare Checklist For Young Adults/College Students

What are Advance Medical Directives?

Advance Medical Directives are designed to illustrate an individual’s wishes/preferences in regard to medical care in the event the said individual is incapable of making medical decisions on their own.  One of the most important facets of an Advance Medical Directive, is that the legal document allows you to designate a contingent decision-maker for medical decisions if one is unable to do so themselves and discuss medical conditions of another individual with healthcare professionals.  Parents of children over the age of majority may wish to consider having this in place for their children.

What about HIPAA Authorizations?

In tandem with preparing Advance Medical Directives for your college-aged student, it is important to complete a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) release form.  A HIPAA release form allows physicians to share information and medical records with a designated agent.  If a medical emergency occurs with a student who is over the age of 18 without a HIPAA release form, it is possible that information would not be readily shared regarding their situation (such as if the student is in a car accident and is unconscious), even with parents. Although there is not a standard HIPAA form, generic HIPAA-compliant authorization forms can be obtained online or typically are offered by health care providers as well.

 Why Would A College Student Need Advance Medical Directives and HIPAA Authorizations?

An intramural sports game, a homecoming celebration, athletics, studying abroad, intense stress; this new environment for your child may pose additional medical risks as they attend college.  In the event that your child were to be involved in a medical emergency, without Advance Medical Directives and HIPAA Authorizations, you may not be able to speak with the healthcare provider to determine what is wrong with your child and what care/treatment they should receive like you could when they were under age 18.

Other Helpful Healthcare Documents for College Students:

 Health Insurance Cards:

  • Students should be sure to keep a copy of their health insurance cards on campus and easily accessible in case they need to seek medical attention
  • A photo of the front and back of the health insurance card should be sufficient (instead of keeping the actual card on campus)

Emergency Contacts:

  • Students should provide emergency contacts to the university, residence hall, and directors of any extracurricular activities
  • This will ensure that someone will be notified if the student suffers a health emergency

How Do I Achieve Peace-of-Mind?

As mentioned above, you may wish to consider implementing Advance Medical Directives and HIPAA Authorizations to ensure that in the event of a catastrophe in which you were unable to be there physically, you would be permitted to speak to the healthcare provider to fulfill your adult child’s medical desires and needs and make decisions on their behalf if your child is unable to do so for themselves.


Important Disclosure Information

Bryan R. Blades

Financial Consultant

View Bio

Derrick J. Goodenow

Senior Financial Planner

View Bio