A 17-year-old Navy plebe sprained his ankle skateboarding and wants to leave the emergency department to seek treatment at the Naval Academy Medical Clinic. You do a medical screening examination and find the patient has capacity to make decisions, but are worried because he is underage. You should:
Allow the patient to refuse treatment.
Contact the patient's parents and obtain consent for discharge.
Have the patient sign out Against Medical Advice (AMA).
Obtain the commanding officer's consent.
Complete transfer paperwork and arrange transport to the clinic.
Military personnel younger than 18 years are considered emancipated minors. As long as the patient is alert, understands the risks and benefits, and there is no eminent life threat, he may refuse treatment.