Accommodating diabetes in the workplace
If an employer finds that the cost of an accommodation would impose an undue hardship, and no funding is available from another source, an applicant or employee with a disability should be offered the option of paying for the portion of the cost that constitutes an undue hardship, or of providing the accommodation. Most individuals with diabetes never experience an episode of severe hypoglycemia because either they are not on medication that causes it or they recognize the early warning signs and can quickly self-treat the problem by drinking or eating. However, the urine test is not a reliable or accurate indicator of blood glucose levels and is a poor measure of the individual's current health status. Rather, both the current state of diabetes management and judicial interpretations of the ADA have stressed that each person should be evaluated individually. Defining and reporting hypoglycemia in diabetes, a report from the American Diabetes Association Workgroup on Hypoglycemia. As with any disability, the potential to discriminate exists at any point in the employment process. Diabetes usually has no impact on an individual's ability to do a particular job, and indeed an employer may not even know that a given employee has diabetes. Severe hypoglycemia, requiring the assistance of another person, is a medical emergency. In the short term, high blood glucose levels can cause hunger, thirst, headache, blurry vision, frequent urination, itchy and dry skin, and, if it is not treated for a period of time, diabetic ketoacidosis, which can cause breathing difficulties, coma, and even death.
Blood glucose test results. As with any disability, the potential to discriminate exists at any point in the employment process. Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Defining and reporting hypoglycemia in diabetes, a report from the American Diabetes Association Workgroup on Hypoglycemia. The person with diabetes needs to take responsibility for maintaining a good diet, exercising, and seeking appropriate medical care. Such checks only take minutes to complete. Thus, many people with diabetes never develop any of these complications, and those that do generally develop them over a period of years. Low vision aids may prove useful. Rather, an appropriate evaluation should be undertaken by a health care professional with expertise in diabetes to determine the cause of the low blood glucose, the circumstances of the episode, whether it was an isolated incident, whether adjustment to the insulin regimen may mitigate this risk, and the likelihood of such an episode happening again. An employer may not deny an employment opportunity to a worker with diabetes based on safety concerns, unless it can demonstrate that the specific applicant or employee would pose a "direct threat" or significant risk of substantial harm to himself or herself or others that cannot be reduced or eliminated through reasonable accommodation. Insulin and oral medications do not cure diabetes. The most common accommodation that a person with diabetes needs is easy and virtually cost-free: Blood glucose monitoring is a more accurate and timely means to measure glycemic control. Some people with type 2 particularly in the early stages of the disease can control their diabetes through diet and exercise. However, recurrent episodes of severe hypoglycemia may indicate that an individual may in fact not be able to safely perform a job, particularly jobs or tasks involving significant risk of harm to employees or the public, especially when these episodes cannot be explained. Symptoms of severe hypoglycemia may include confusion or, rarely, seizure or loss of consciousness 6. For example, the employee may need to eat a snack to treat low blood glucose or drink water in order to keep hydrated. Also, certain work schedules, such as rotating or split shifts, can make it especially difficult for some individuals to manage their diabetes, and may need to be modified. E Most people with diabetes can manage their condition in such a manner that there is no or minimal risk of incapacitation from hypoglycemia at work. This assessment must be based on objective, factual evidence, including the best recent medical evidence and advances to treat and control diabetes. A single blood glucose test result only gives information about an individual's blood glucose level at one particular point in time. Most employers are required to provide accommodations unless those accommodations would create an undue burden 3. The requirements of the specific job and the individual's ability to perform that job, with or without reasonable accommodations, always need to be considered. A1C and estimated average glucose eAG. Breaks may be needed to allow an individual to test blood glucose levels when needed.
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