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Newbie in Washington state

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Tamrantula, Jan 27, 2012.

  1. Tamrantula

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    I just stumbled onto this forum a couple days ago, and have been reading through the forum. Very informative! I consider myself somewhat informed, being a nurse and having a brother with T1 and husband with T2...but, have run across a few things that hadn't entered my mind.

    My DS was diagnosed in July 2011, just after a week at camp where he was wanting to leave all activities early to run to the restroom. This is a camp where his dad and I both volunteer, so we were there to see the pattern. The day after we arrived home, I checked his bg with his dad's meter. The oringinal numbers were almost 500--so, we made a trip to the ER. His blood draw value there was 704. They determined he was on the edge of DKA, but able to go to the regular medical floor, not ICU, where we spent the next 5 days. This was my one "healthy" child, who never had been to the hospital, never had blood drawn, never got "sick"! Poor kid had lots of new experiences in those 5 days! LOL.
    He started using an insulin pump in December 2011, and is doing pretty well on it. Although he doesn't test as often as he should....he is 14, and is trying to be an independant teen! He has had several readings lately in the 200-250 range. The next few years may be interesting!

    My biggest struggle right now, is they moved my job an hour away! And my husband works 45 minutes away in the other direction. My DS attends an alternative type HS, where they are in different locations in the city on different days. There is only a school nurse 1 day a week...so, if there was a bad low at school, it could be a bad situation.

    Anyway, sorry for being so long-winded! I am grateful to find this forum! It has already been informative and educational!
     
  2. JaxDad

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    Hi Tamrantula, welcome.
     
  3. dvane

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    Welcome to the family. We too are in Washington. Up north just past Everett.
     
  4. Arctic Stamp Queen

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    Welcome

    Welcome, though I am sorry that you are here for these reasons. And wow, what a bunch of changes for your family between diagnosis and job changes. You will find a lot of support and encouragement here. :)
     
  5. Flutterby

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    HI and Welcome to the forums. There is a lot of great information here.

    As for your son's school, is it a public school or does it recieve federal funding? If so, there MUST be someone with him at all times that knows how to treat high and low blood sugar, and as well as use glucagon. Since he's 14 and pretty independent they don't really need to know the day in and day out things, but they definitely need to know what to do in case of an emergency.
     
  6. Tamrantula

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    Thanks! Looks like lots of great info here!
     
  7. Tamrantula

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    Cool! We are in Tacoma, but I work in Seattle. (sigh! lol)
     
  8. Tamrantula

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    Thanks! And, yeah, it has been an interesting year to say the least. LOL
     
  9. Tamrantula

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    It is a public high school, this is just the 3rd year it has been open. They had to go through an interview process, make up a portfolio of "best" class work, teacher eval, self eval, attendance records and so on....we went through the whole process BEFORE he was diagnosed. The way the school works, is the "main" part of the school is a group of portables near the entrance of the park/zoo. Then, they have "classes" all over the park which is located on several miles of land. They also have classes at other schools around the city--for instance, they do robotics at the middle school which is something like 10 miles from the park. That way they have access to the equipment they need to have that class, without the school having to buy it.
    So, in order to be sure someone knows how to treat the diabetes if there is a problem, I would have to go to all the different locations, and talk with them individually. (And, I may have to just DO that....part of my responsibility for his having the great opportunity to attend this school that is so perfect for my kids). Each semester, I would need to do this, as they have different classes and different teachers all the time.
    He does have a 504, so they get the basic info.

    I think the other thing I will need to do, is go to each site and make up an "emergency" box to leave at their school--with written instructions.
     
  10. deafmack

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    Hi Tammy,
    I am also in Washington, Shoreline which is just north of Seattle. There are others here from Washington as well and I am sure they will also send you welcome. Washington has pretty good laws in place regarding diabetes care.
    I have included a link. The American Diabetes Association has a whole page on Safe at School Campaign that should be helpful, but for now here is the link to Washington State Laws and Policies.
    http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/parents-and-kids/diabetes-care-at-school/legal-protections/state-laws-and-policies.html?__utma=1.1179239092.1325605777.1327842051.1327951607.16&__utmb=1.25.9.1327952150472&__utmc=1&__utmx=-&__utmz=1.1325605777.1.1.utmcsr=(direct)|utmccn=(direct)|utmcmd=(none)&__utmv=-&__utmk=181080871
    Also if you haven't already I strongly suggest getting a 504 plan into place for your son. It will protect his rights with regards to his taking care of his diabetes as well as other areas regarding his diabetes care such as during tests, etc. I know some say they don''t use a 504 plan but you never know when it will be needed also or when your son will face discrimination from a teacher or other member of his school staff because he has diabetes, so I strongly urge having a 504 plan in place. The other thing is I am glad you found this place. The people here are awesome. Feel free to ask any questions you might have. I have learned more here than any other place and I can't say enough good about this place and the community here.
     
  11. deafmack

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    Hi Tammy,
    I see now that your son has a 504 plan but you might want to write up a simmple care plan to do when his BG is low or too high. Is your son using an insulin pump or injections and does he have a CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor)? Having a simple care plan in place and that your son have on him at all times his supplies such as his meter and glucose tabs, etc. is a necessary thing. Also someone that is with him most of the day should be trainied in glucagon use. Having volunteers that know about the signs and symptoms of a low is a great idea. I wish you the best.
     
  12. Flutterby

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    They don't have a teacher going with them to all these different locations, or are they bused and then will a teacher at the specific location?

    Possible he has a good friend that is with him most of the time that is willing to learn some emergency stuff?
     
  13. Tamrantula

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    He just got his pump beginning of December. His diabetes team has not mentioned the CGM, although I may question them about it next time I see them, esp since he can feel no difference between 700 and 30!

    He is really good about caring his bag with him--that is SUPPOSED to be where his supplies live....but, I have found a few times lately, that the bag is empty of the necessary supplies for his lows...he just is so laid back about it all, that he forgets. He remembers the bag, but forgets that he has used the glucose tabs/juice/snacks etc.

    I have taught his brother and cousin about the glucagon, but since the school is the way it is...they may or may not be on the same campus at the same time. It varies day to day.

    I want to keep emergency supplies in the office...but, there is no way to get to them quickly. It is kind of a dilemma at this point, but I am sure we will improvise SOME kind of plan! LOL
     
  14. Tamrantula

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    They don't have a teacher with them....they have a shuttle bus that they take from one place to another--or they walk (sometimes a 20 min or so walk). The teachers are at the location, just like in a regular school where the teacher would stay in a classroom and the students go to them.

    I wonder (thinking out loud) if they always have the same shuttle bus driver....that would be someone that needs to be aware! I hadnt thought of that till just this minute.

    So many details.....
     
  15. Tamrantula

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    Thanks for the welcome and all the great info. I will read through it when I get home from work (on lunch break right now.)

    I am kind of trying to tread lightly with the school right now, but still maintain strict safety standards...because the school is what it is, they could decide that it just "isn't safe" for him to attend and tell him he has to transfer to a traditional school. That would devastate him, esp as his brother and cousin (who lives with us) both attend that school.
    I really need a good talk with the school nurse, but she only is there one day a week, and I work that day. I have not been able to talk with her since before school started...we leave each other messages, but I haven't gotten to talk with her. I know she worked a diabetes camp in the summer, and has a clue...but I would like to touch base with her at some point.
     
  16. Flutterby

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    I know your son is older and doesn't NEED someone there all the time for him, but I really think you need to contact his school and brain storm with them. They ARE responsible for him while he's at school and being a public school its the law that they provide someone that is knowledgable in his care. Now, that doesn't mean he needs a nurse following him around all day, or even an aid or someone following him--being in his mid teens I'm sure he'd be quite embarrassed by that! But there should be someone within the schools that they are visiting that know that he has t1 and emergency care. His teachers should definitely know he has t1 and the symptoms of a low bg, so they don't mistake it for bad behavior... Not sure how much the bus driver can do, ours is aware of the fact that Kaylee has T1 and he knows if she's sleeping she's not really sleeping.. but other than that he's instructed to contact the school so they can contact 911.

    Good Luck!
     
  17. deafmack

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    Well to me if they force him to attend a "traditional" school because of his diabetes that would smack of discrimination. Your son should be able to do anything he wants to do as long as it is reasonable and he takes care of his D. Secondly, I really think a CGM would really be good for your son to have since he is unaware when he is high or low and he could do a fingerstick to double check the numbers on the CGM when they are above or below a certain number or when the arrows are shooting straight up or straight down.
    Your son sounds like the typical teen. I swear sometimes they think things will take care of themselves, ie the diabetes bag will refill itself, but saying that even I as an adult forget to check my kit and last week I went without any strips to test with. Duh! Like my meter is going to automatically produce the strip for me.
     

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