On Wednesday a bill meant to improve education in California schools about type 1 diabetes was approved unanimously by the California Senate Education Committee.
The bill by Senator Richard Roth has some serious star power behind it as it moves through the legislative approval process. Rock star Bret Michaels is encouraging lawmakers to support passage.
"As a lifelong type 1 diabetic, I live it every day," said Bret Michaels during a Wednesday hearing on the bill. "I am honored to be able to share my story and to offer my full support for Senator Roth’s Senate Bill 138 -- a bill that not only could save countless lives but will improve people’s quality of lives until there is a cure."
The bill would require school districts to work with schools serving kindergarten through 12th grade students to identify methods of informing parents and students about T1D, and will require schools to implement those methods.
"Type 1 diabetes can be difficult to manage let alone diagnose. Failure to diagnose and begin treatments can have life-threatening ramifications. What we are asking for with this bill is that children and their parents have critical information made available to them,” said Senator Roth (D-Riverside). "This will have a life-changing impact on anyone who may develop this potentially fatal disease."
Health care authorities say that type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune system disease. That means a person's immune system attacks the insulin producing cells in the pancreas. Health Early diagnosis and treatment is considered crucial. Once diagnosed, a child can receive an individualized health care plan coupling treatment with education, support and ongoing assessment of possible complications.
"Lack of awareness and education can cost someone their life. We must empower parents to be informed advocates for their children by giving them the resources they need," insisted Roth.