Recently, a 17-year-old woman came to the emergency room seeking STI testing with the consent and knowledge of her mother and father.
She has the legal right to confidential reproductive health care and legally can consent to services in this setting in our state. Yet, due to the lack of knowledge of the medical staff, she was forced into a patient gown reserved for patients who are at risk of running away. Her belongings were also taken away to prevent her from leaving before a parent came to sign consent forms and sign her out.
Education and advocacy around confidential care for adolescents is paramount if we want young people to seek care when they need it.