Insulin Case to Supreme Court with UNAC/UHCP’s Amicus Brief

May 2011

Over the long weekend, the San Francisco Chronicle revisited the issue of whether unlicensed school personnel should be allowed to administer insulin to children in California public schools. UNAC/UHCP filed an amicus brief in support of the American Nurses Association (ANA) position in the case in May 2011.

The case, to be decided by the California Supreme Court, will affect the lives of 14,000 diabetic children who receive insulin injections in public school. The ANA asserts that the law permits only licensed school personnel, such as school nurses, to administer insulin injections. UNAC/UHCP supports that position because misadministration of insulin can lead to devastating consequences, particularly for children who are too young to self-administer.

If the Supreme Court allows unlicensed staff to administer insulin, said Maureen Cones, the ANA's lawyer, "students with disabilities will lose their right to receive health care from the licensed professionals who are qualified to provide it."

The SF Chronicle notes two lower courts have ruled that California law allows only licensed doctors and nurses to administer medication, including insulin, except in emergencies.