Parents and guardians are the only people who can legally authorize medical treatment for children. Doctors offices, hospitals and urgent care centers will not provide medical treatment to children who are not brought in by their parents or guardians. This means that if you and your spouse leave your child with a babysitter (regardless of whether the sitter is a relative, friend or neighbor), you must prepare for the "just in case" by furnishing the sitter with a medical release form.
Temporary Medical Release Form
A temporary medical release form gives another individual -- who is not the parent or guardian of a child -- legal authorization to seek medical treatment for the child left in her care. You can create the form yourself, and make it clear in the language that the babysitter has temporary, or one-time, medical release permission, which only applies to the date that you are leaving your child in her care. Write your child's name into the medical consent form. Make sure you and the babysitter both sign the medical release form at the bottom, and date it.
Ongoing Medical Release Form
You can write up a medical release form that gives your family babysitter ongoing authorization to seek medical attention for your child whenever you are absent. This type of form may be more advantageous for long-term sitters or nannies who tend to a couple's children on a consistent basis. For an ongoing medical release form, make it clear in the language that the form gives approval for the sitter to get pediatric medical attention only in the absence of the parent or guardian, and that the terms of these conditions do not expire unless her services are terminated. Sign and date the form, and review it with your sitter so she understands.
Medical Insurance Forms
You can work your medical insurance information into the medical release form, or create a separate form for that. A medical insurance form should contain the basic information about your family's health insurance plan, such as the name of the health insurance carrier, the group number, the plan I.D. and the dates of coverage. This information may need to be presented to a doctor's office, hospital or urgent care center if a babysitter has to take your son or daughter in for medical attention.
Limited Power of Attorney for Consent to Medical Care
You can develop a limited power of attorney for consent to medical care form, which gives your babysitter the legal right to make medical treatment decisions in your absence. This is a formal document that is drafted with the help of an attorney, or some medical centers will provide you with the form that you can pick up and fill out prior to leaving your child with a babysitter. The medical center will keep the form on file so that they know to treat your child if he is brought in by the individual on the document.
Kyra Sheahan has been a writer for various publications since 2008. Her work has been featured in "The Desert Leaf" and "Kentucky Doc Magazine," covering health and wellness, environmental conservatism and DIY crafts. Sheahan holds an M.B.A. with an emphasis in finance.