I know many, if not most, of my posts have to do with type 1 diabetes. This one is probably the most important one I have ever written. PLEASE share it as this is the fastest way I can think of to get the word out. I need your help!
The State of Washington is trying to limit the number of test strips used by diabetic children to one per day. A test strip is inserted into the blood sugar monitor each time the child needs to test his or her blood sugar. Michael tests 6 - 8 times per day - some kids test more, some kids test less. Some very young diabetics may test 15 times per day! Some children wear a CGM (continuous glucose monitor), but testing with a meter and strip is still the most common method.
Tight blood sugar control is vital to a child's health. The difficult thing with diabetes is that blood sugar that is either too high, or too low can be deadly. All type 1 families walk a tightrope of control. I would guess there isn't a type 1 mom out there that doesn't breath a sigh of relief every morning when she sees her child is OK. The daily stress can vary, but our concern for the future health of our children does not. The long term complications of the disease include blindness, amputation, kidney failure, heart disease and more. I want my son, and all children with type 1, to have a future free from these devastating effects.
I realize times are tough and that states are slashing budgets in any way they can, but this particular idea is potentially deadly! Test strips are expensive (about $1 each), but this short-sighted scheme to save money will end up costing the state much more in the long run. The state is trying to tell us that there is no correlation between frequent testing and blood sugar control...any parent of a diabetic, any child with diabetes, any endocrinologist will vehemently disagree. As a mom, I am mortified, and frankly, scared!
Please pass this along - the health of our children depends upon it. If this occurs in Washington, we will simply be the first in a line of fifty! If you are one of my "Type-1 Mom" friends that happens to have a blog, please include this in your next post. I encourage you all to at least email the state at the address I've provided below....personally, I think sending an actual letter may get more attention - perhaps include a photo of your child or a note from him or her.
Address your letters to:
Washington State Health Care Authority
Health Technology Assessment Program
676 Woodland Square, Loop SE
Lacey, WA 98503
Link to Washington State Health Care Authority
Please give Ms Hope-Curry a piece of your mind, so type 1 families can have peace of mind.