Transition from child to adult care

Transitioning from child to adult care can be a difficult time for both the young person and their parents or carers – this hub will help you through the process and allow you to share your experiences too.

Last Update 09/07/2024
This content is available in multiple languages.

Transitioning from child to adult care is a process that every young person with a lung condition will go through at some point as they reach adulthood. This is when the care they receive moves from childhood services to adult services. This transition can start from as young as 12-14 and as late as 18. The transition period may last several years with some young adults still being under certain childhood services. There are many differences between how care is given to children and adults and this transition can be a big change.

The process of moving from child to adult services can be different depending on the condition you have and the country or even city you live in. Because of this variation, this page will provide a brief overview of some of the changes you might experience. Mainly, it will provide a platform for people to share their own experiences and what they learned during their own or their child’s transition to adult care.

If you have experienced transition, please share your story or advice with us and help others going through the process.


What are some of the main changes?

In childhood, parents or carers are generally in charge of a young person’s care. They might:

  • make sure you take your medications correctly and on time,
  • order and collect your prescriptions,
  • make appointments for you,
  • remember when appointments are, and
  • make decisions about the care you receive.


In childhood services you may also have a close relationship with the team of doctors and healthcare professionals who care for you. When you move to adult care these teams will be replaced with new ones. Adult care is often more patient led. You will learn to ask your own questions and make decisions about your own care. All hospitals and healthcare teams work with young people everyday to help them with the transition. They will have a process in place to make the move as easy as possible for you.

Tip: can you ask your healthcare team about how they manage transition now, this will help you be better prepared when the time comes.