When I look at the frustrations and difficulties that are present for Type 1 Diabetics, there are many things that potentially could make their lives easier. As the caregiver to my T1D toddler son, there are specific things that can make life easier for him, and me. I find that the confidence I have in my ability to care for him sans all of the diabetic technology seems to be growing, since we are only 5 months in, I find that the modern conveniences would be a welcome addition to our daily management.
When we learn of the new helpful gizmos that are beginning to circulate, then learn that insurance coverage is about 10 steps behind, the frustration begins to mount. We fight all day long, we battle blood sugar numbers, insulin administration, making sure enough carbs are ingested to cover the insulin that has been dosed, why must we fight insurance on a continual basis to get the basic needs for our children covered? Learning that most often we need to have documented proof of the constant failure in our daily lives for insurance companies to realize the seriousness of the need we have been pushing for. This is especially true for items like the CGM which is not covered on certain programs like CCS or Medical. My heart breaks for the families who are on these programs who can’t afford to pay for different insurance and are unable to have a life saving device that will assist in monitoring their child’s blood sugar. A device like the CGM will be an asset when my son starts school and is out of my care. Not to mention the assistance it will give parents who have children diagnosed as young as my son was. When a 1-year-old is diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, it’s heartbreaking and terrifying when the realization that your child can’t communicate hits you.
In the beginning of my son’s diagnosis I would sleep on the floor in his room, making sure he was breathing and generally OK. Even now, 5 months later, I check his blood 8-10 times a day in order to monitor his blood sugar. As we anxiously await a CGM, I find it horrific that the insurance companies stipulate who qualifies for certain products that aid in diabetes management. It’s an obvious statement that we need a cure, but a more realistic statement is that we need better healthcare for the children who have Type 1 Diabetes.
With so much uncertainty and mystery that plagues each day for a type 1 diabetic, and when the resources are out there, accessibility should be paramount. My hope, is that as we faithfully search out and wait for a cure, we make our voices heard that care for our diabetic children needs to change. This disease is intrusive enough without multiple through the night checks and extra added expense when CGM devices aren’t covered. Only those who know what living through the difficulties day-by-day means, can advocate change, lets change the T1D world with technology!