How To Write A Release To Allow Someone Else To Authorize Medical Care For Your Child

Written by J. Hirby and Fact Checked by The Law Dictionary Staff  

It’s an uncertain world, and parents can’t be with their children constantly. As only a parent or legal guardian can make medical decisions for children, it may be necessary to create a release that allows another adult to make medical decisions in the absence of the parent. Doing so ensures that a minor can always get the medical attention they require. Fortunately, creating a release is simple. Once you’ve created a template, you can leave one with your child’s school, daycare, camp or any other authorized caregivers. Be sure to update it periodically if information changes.

Choose a Format

Sample medical release forms can be found online. These can make the task quick and efficient, as you only have to fill out the pertinent information. However, since there is not a single acceptable format for medical releases you do not have to use a form. A simple statement that includes the relevant information is sufficient.

Basic Information to Include

Being the release by stating the names of the parents and the name and address of the individual who is authorized to obtain medical care for the child. For example, the statement may begin with, “We, John Doe and Jane Doe, hereby grant Mary Doe of 1234 Main Street, Anytown, OR 97205, the authority to obtain medical treatment for the following child or children.” What follows are the names and birthdates of any children covered by the release. Then the release stipulates the type of decisions and actions the recipient of the release is authorized to take. This statement doesn’t have to be particularly detailed. Simply noting that the recipient has authority to make decisions in a medical emergency is enough.

Additional Information to Disclose

If your child takes any medications, and you want to authorize the recipient of the release to administer those substances, you may also make note of this. Include the name of the medication, the dosage and the number of times per day it should be administered. If your child has any specific medical concerns, it may be wise to mention them in the release. For instance, disclosing that your child has a peanut allergy can be immensely helpful.

Sign and Notarize

The release needs to be signed. Although it is not technically required, it may make sense to do this before a notary. Some hospitals may not honor a release that does not have notarized signatures.

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