New bill provides diabetes care in schools - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

New bill provides diabetes care in schools

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Kindergarten teacher, Donna Gleaton and her student, Caleb Keaton make it a point to check their blood sugar together.  Both have type one diabetes and insulin pumps.  Over time they've educated their entire class about the disease.

"They've gotten use to the routines and checking blood sugars and making sure that we're ok and they help tell Caleb, make sure to check your blood sugar. And they're always asking, does Caleb need to check his blood sugar? But we do good, just make it part of our daily routine," said Gleaton.

And education like this will soon be spreading throughout schools all over Georgia.  Governor Nathan Deal signed a bill providing diabetes care in schools- at no extra cost.  This is to help students self-manage their diabetes with the permission of their physicians and parents.  Under the bill, there will also be training for school personnel to help children manage their diabetes.

"When my teacher knows about diabetes she can help me," said Caleb. 

"Training is very important, because you don't want to make a mistake or give a child too much medicine then what they're suppose to have.  Most of the people with insulin pumps do carb counting," said Gleaton. 

Registered Nurse, Sandra Breedlove says school nurses in Dougherty County have already been helping students manage their diabetes.  And each one has a customized plan.

"We encourage the kids to know how to do it themselves so that they can take care of themselves, but we do monitor that process," said Breedlove. 

And this education and training is more important now than ever before.  "Now, because of childhood obesity we see both type one and type two and we're able to identify pre-diabetic children as well.  So there's a lot of variety in how their diabetes is managed based on the type of diabetes that they have," said Breedlove. 

Until there's a cure, education is what's being used to help children manage their disease and make diabetes care part of their everyday routine.

The Georgia chapter of the American Diabetes Association offered to provide the training to school personnel free of charge.

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