David Spero on Diabetes In the Workplace

Diabetes Self-Management has  good article to consider if you’re still in the workforce. To whet your appetite:

“Diabetes influences what jobs are best to work. Here are some things to think about:

• Regular schedules are best. Dr. Alan Glaseroff, a physician with Type 1 diabetes, says “Try to avoid shift rotation. It throws off your insulin, food, and exercise schedule.”

• Stressful jobs aren’t good, as stress raises blood sugar levels. In addition to emotional stress, stress can include physical hardship such as working in extreme cold or extreme heat.

• It’s important to be aware what kind of health insurance, if any, a job provides.• It is also important to know if breaks are allowed. Managing diabetes requires occasional breaks for checking blood sugar, eating, or take medication. A warehouse worker told me, “At my job, you get one paid break in nine hours. Most people skip the unpaid break and just keep working. My diabetes has been out of control since I started.”

• Larger companies might be better, because they are covered by worker-protection laws. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires employers with over 15 workers to provide “reasonable accommodation” for disabilities, including diabetes.The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) assures that workers get unpaid time off for health needs such as doctor appointments and self-management training, but it only applies to companies with 50 or more employees within 70 miles of your place of work. According to San Francisco–based employee rights attorney Alan Adelman, jobs with union membership may provide an extra layer of protection.

Under the ADA, no employer of any size is allowed to discriminate against you, though small ones are not required to accommodate special needs.”

Source: Diabetes In the Workplace – Diabetes Self-Management

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