Thursday, November 11, 2010

Stand Up for Diabetes Education!


Meri at "Our Diabetic Life" told a story that really touched my heart (and struck a nerve). It was about an elderly lady at the pharmacy, newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

This story really hot home because I work at an Independent and Type1 Assisted Living facility. I LOVE my "Grandfriends" soooo much! They mean everything to me! One of the biggest problems I see in elderly healthcare is the lack of concern for new diagnosed Type 2 Diabetics in the elderly population. I mean come on. You are taking older persons that usually can't figure out a VCR and telling them to figure out a new life style and gadget all on their own?

It's been tough road for people with diabetes, and people with diabetic loved ones . There are SO misconceptions about diabetes. The media really messes it up with their commercials too!

I cannot tell you how many times I have come back to work on my own in the middle of the night to check BS readings of my residents, type 1 & 2, because they were having a bad day, or get this..... YES THIS IS TRUE..... A homecare nurse forced to give insulin when a patient is already kinda low, BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT THE DOCTOR HAS ORDERED!!! I've seen it happen. A person given so many units of insulin at bedtime, with a snack to cover their "low number". By the time it's that late they usually don't have a choice, they can't get a hold of a doctor. I came in one night and found a resident that keeps her blood sugar very well controlled in a coma! The doctor had just changed her insulin and sent her on her merry way to deal with it....... alone!

How can our healthcare system do this? It shocks me. I can only imagine with all the Medicare cuts, and the supposed "Obama" Care (that actually says that older people will be denied life saving medication because of their age), where diabetics fit in.

I remember the "swine flu" scare of last year. I was in charge of disaster planning, and resident safety. The reports from the CDC claimed that in a major pandemic certain groups would be denied life saving care. One of groups among this list was "uncontrolled" diabetics! If there was a disaster do you think if you said you were diabetic, someone would even waste the time to identify if you were "controlled"? What guidelines make a person "under control"?

I urge everyone to get involved in educating anyone you can about diabetes! I think there is a stigma about our health, and the health of our loved ones. Who has the right to say we are unworthy of proper care, or life saving treatments? Who has the right to diagnose someone with a scary, life altering disease and just send them on their way to figure it out on their own? Who has the right to deny elderly people who created the world, and protected the freedom we now enjoy, the right to help. Since when is a person disposable?

I'm not into politics. That might just change here pretty soon. No one has the right to take someone's quality of life or even life itself!

Thank you for educating the world about diabetes! We will triumph, we will conquer, and will not give up without a fight!

1 comment:

  1. WOW...great post Rachael. AND you are so right about MDs just changing stuff and then expected the patient (the elderly at that) to "deal" without the proper skills or education or support system in place. I saw this many, many, many times over the years during my ICU nursing career...usually I saw the "results" of this during my career to be frank.

    I need to go check out Meri's post. Keep up the great work AND how are you feeling?

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