Yesterday, the California Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the American Nurses Association (ANA) v. Tom Torlakson as Superintendent of Public Instruction, a case that disputes the legality of non-medical professionals administering insulin to children with diabetes in a school setting.
The two arguments (in my very simple terms, my apologies to the judicial system): ANA states that only a nurse can administer insulin in the schools vs. others being allowed to administer insulin.
What I find interesting here is that it took seven years to get to California’s highest court. Appeals, litigation, and seven years later the Supreme Court has to rule in 90 days on its findings based on the arguments.
Perhaps it’s me, but there just MUST COME A TIME that common sense prevails in cases such as these. When it is so very clear of a child’s welfare being compromised, there is something wrong. When the average ratio in the state is 1 nurse per 2200 students; there is something wrong there as well.
And it is THAT point that also MUST be considered.
In as much as the lawsuits seem ridiculously simple to solve, the bigger question the Union is asking is the real problem of the school district: Are there enough nurses, and what to do about it?
Unfortunately they may have a valid point. But they missed on the approach and at the expense of those kids with diabetes; and that’s not good.
If you want Rocky Road Ice Cream; you have to ask for Rocky Road Ice Cream.
The real error here is that the plight of those with diabetes is being argued to make a bigger point and to fight a bigger argument.
When I read these comments:
Justice Joyce Kennard: “If kids can self-administer, if parents can help administer the insulin shot, what amount of scientific knowledge is applicable?”
Justice Carol Corrigan: “If I’m a parent of a first grader and there are no school nurses … either we have to hope little Billy knows how to inject himself or I have to rush home from work, is that how it works?”
My hunch is that the arguments made by the ANA are losing footing very quickly in the minds of these Justices. And that is too bad because they may very well have a point that something needs to be done to change that 1 nurse per 2200 students. I, for one, do not know what should/can work in this scenario. I do not know what it should be, but THAT argument was not the argument and I do believe it should have been; and in a different scenario, it still may.
But someone at the ANA either underestimated the power of the American Diabetes Association’s ability to make the correct argument or they didn’t think it all the way through that the ‘issue at hand’ was too detrimental to our kids to be used for the bigger point they are making, or wanted to make.
It’s too bad because they may have a good and valid point. But after seven years of going through the legal system, finally, we can only hope that the courts’ wisdom will prevail and a better system of administering insulin to the children who have enough on their plate dealing with type 1 diabetes every day, will no longer have to worry who can, and will, administer insulin when needed .
It very well may be that it turns out in our favor, that will be a good thing and thank you to all who fought the good fight for the last seven years.
Special kudos to the American Diabetes Association. If you ever wanted to see an organization in action, this was the ADA doing what they do better than ANY other group out there; fighting for the rights of people with diabetes—BRAVO ADA.
But the fact will remain that 1 nurse per 2200 students will stay the same—-and that should have been the argument of the ANA to begin with; now we don’t know if that ratio is okay to continue; and we very well may never know. And that is not good.
I am a diabetes dad.
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