Last updated: 9 June 2023

Next review: 5 June 2024

Health services for young people post 18 years

Services may change as you become an adult. Find out more here.

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Therapies and paediatricians

Children’s health services such as therapies, Specialist Nursing, and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) work with young people until they turn 18. They start to plan their transition from 17.5 years.

The paediatricians at Wood Street will refer you to your GP for continuing support of the young person’s medical needs. They may make onward referrals to adult specialist services for help with conditions such as epilepsy or cerebral palsy. 

This may happen before the age of 17.5 if there are longer waiting lists for specialist clinics.  In the year 11 review, the therapies, specialist nursing, or Child and Adolescent Mental Health service will discuss your son/daughter’s care. They may then refer on to an adult service.

Health care in education – if you have an EHCP

If the young person has their therapy services in school or college, these will continue up until 19 years (e.g. speech and language therapy).

  • The college may ask for funding to ‘buy in’ Speech and Language Therapy and Occupational Therapy for a communication or learning need
  • Some therapy services are provided by the adult learning disability team e.g. Physiotherapy
  • You may also have Physiotherapy from your local hospital
  • If you have equipment such as a specialist chair or standing frame, this will be transferred to your college

If you are staying on in post-18 education, your new college may provide you with the therapies in your education health and care plan.  You could access some of the funding for therapies in college using a personal budget

If you are leaving education and still require therapies, you’ll probably be referred to the community learning disability team.

Community Learning Disability Team (CLDT)

The CLDT is a mixed team of Speech and Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists and psychologists, and psychiatrists. It works with people with severe learning disabilities.  The team will assess whether the young person has a learning disability and is eligible for support from the team. 

Find out about the therapies in the adult learning disability team


You may be referred to the team for treatment of any orthotic needs e.g. insoles in shoes to prevent knee pain. You can be referred by your GP or by your children’s orthotist.


If you require podiatry services as an adult, a health professional can refer you to Waltham Forest Podiatry Service

District Nursing Service

The district nursing service provides 24-hour care for people aged 16 and over who have an identified nursing need and live in Waltham Forest. The service is provided at home.

Find out more about Waltham Forest District Nursing service

Continence and personal care

If young people have personal care needs or require support around continence, they will be referred to Waltham Forest Continence Advisory service

Continuing Health Care

If your son/daughter had specialist health services before they were 17, they may need specialist adult health services. This is called Continuing Care. 

If this is the case their social worker or nurse should complete a checklist called a ‘Continuing Care Decision Support Tool’. This will assess if they have high needs that need to be specially funded as an adult. This will be done at 17.5 years old. 

If they are eligible for Continuing Health Care, they might get services or a Personal Health Budget from the NHS.

Visit the Beacon website or call the free helpline on 0345 548 0300 for independent advice on NHS continuing healthcare.

Adult Mental Health Services

CAMHS may refer a young person to the adult mental health team if they have a diagnosed mental health need. The GP can also refer. Adult mental health services

Young people can also refer themselves to Talking Therapies Waltham Forest

Annual Health Checks and the Learning Disability Register

If your son/daughter has a learning disability, the GP and adult learning disability service will be informed. This may happen after an annual review or medical appointment. Your son/daughter will then receive an annual health check from their GP.

Read more about Annual Health Checks on the NHS website

You can read more about who is eligible for a health check on our GP health checks page

See Mencap's advice page on the annual health check