Senator Bennet tours Barbara Davis Center
By Jackie Brinkman | University Communications

‚ÄčAURORA, Colo. – Ellie White’s parents didn’t realize there was a problem with their little girl until she was 3 years old when they were on a family camping trip. A short time later, doctors delivered the diagnosis — type 1 diabetes.

It is estimated that more than 10 percent of children in the United States suffer with juvenile diabetes. Approximately 35 American children are diagnosed with juvenile diabetes every day.

Ellie shared her thoughts about the illness with U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., last week during a visit at the Barbara Davis Center on the Anschutz Medical Campus. Bennet wanted to learn more about type 1 diabetes and about current research efforts.

Bennet was invited by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to tour the Barbara Davis Center as the center is a major recipient of National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding for Special Diabetes Programs.

Several other families also spoke with the senator to share their experiences dealing with juvenile diabetes. Each child and his or her parent told their story about when they were first diagnosed. One family’s story started when they rushed their 18-month-old son to the hospital where he stayed for two days because he was so sick. Until then, they had no idea he had diabetes.

These families talked about how they’ve had to change their schedules and their eating habits. Other difficulties are being a parent and having to stick your child sometimes up to seven times a day to measure blood sugar levels. They described waking their baby as many as three times a night to check blood sugar levels and so many other difficulties.

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