Long Lost Member
Total Posts: 1
Registered on: ‎09-21-2010

Military and Diabetes

On a similar thread my son is looking at the Border Patrol because he knows he can't get in the military. He has been accepted for the initial testing and I'm trying to get him ready for the eventual issue of having to disclose his type 1 diabetes. The CBP is very vague on the requirements and states it handles these on a case-by-case basis. This type of language always makes me a little skeptical.

He has already been denied work on a cruise line (Disney) because of his type 1. He is 24 and has played collegiate lacrosse.

Anyone have any experience dealing with the CBP?
Super Advisor
Total Posts: 844
Registered on: ‎10-31-2009

Military and Diabetes

Another Reason No?
Financial Liabilities..
Ave. $5-$10k yr? to pay for your Med supplies, etc. , right?
and then till you either On Med Disability or Old enough for Medicare..
so you could be an additional Financial Liability for another 40+ yrs?
Do the math.. $10k yr + Inflation and + ave 10% yr Price increases?
easy $1 Million
and that's not counting if any Medical "complications" come along..

Can be the same for Any Employer, that "we" can have a Severe Impact on their Group Health Insurance..for claims..

I know, It sucks..
Long Lost Member
Total Posts: 4
Registered on: ‎09-21-2010

Military and Diabetes

I have no idea were the actual line is being drawn because I worked 5 years as a Firefighter/EMT and tried out for and passed 2 police exams. Confusing!
Total Posts: 0

Military and Diabetes

Have you seen Basic Qualifications and Medical Requirements for Border Patrol Agents?

Endocrine and Metabolic Systems
Any excess or deficiency in hormonal production can produce metabolic disturbances affecting weight, stress adaptation, energy production, and a variety of symptoms or pathology such as elevated blood pressure, weakness, fatigue and collapse. Any condition affecting normal hormonal/metabolic functioning and response that is likely to adversely affect safe and efficient job performance is generally disqualifying. Cases will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Conditions which may result in disqualification include but are not limited to, these examples:

* Adrenal dysfunction (in the form of Addison�s Disease or Cushing's Syndrome)
* Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus

I suppose the word "may" leaves a little theoretical wiggle room, but it sounds as though they would likely want to consider diabetes an obstacle.
Long Lost Member
Total Posts: 1
Registered on: ‎05-14-2010

Military and Diabetes

I am an active duty Marine with Type 1 Diabetes on insulin pump. Let me tell you first hand the difficulties I have in the Military with this disease. First the innoculations you have to get cause different reactions to your immune system. I know personally 5 Military members that have Type 1 Diabates as a result of the anthrax vaccine. The cost alone that they will have to fund because of your disease is another aspect, the supplies and what happens if you get worse then you are looking at receiving disability from the govt the rest of your life. TRUST me they do not want to cover your expenses.
Total Posts: 30
Registered on: ‎09-15-2010

Military and Diabetes

Just maybe you want to join the US military because your thinking of FREE medical health care in your future through the Veteran Administration. Understand, there is no FREE medical unless it is service related. Veterans have to pay medical cost. The cost is about the same has any County Hospital for non-veterans. Infact, for me I have more flexability and more options under a county system than VA (federal system).

I assure you a diabetic could die in the US military. Yo are subjected to 120 degree weather to 10 below zero. In training, or in permanent party the military is not going to make any medical accommodations if the medical problem is not service related. They will simply medically discharge you from the military.

For example, trainees and servicemen are discharged from military service if they snore, having sleep abnea.

I understand that you have the MOTIVATION & WILL to serve in the military. But , in my opinion it doesn't work. I am an Army Veteran. Active Army 86-90 Army Reserves 91-98. I hid being a Diabetic. ( I was extremely LUCKY) that I didn't die ! Today, its impossible due to better and quicker testing. I would suffer from DK without medical treatment. I would passout all of the time. They would treat me for dehydration and waive me through saying I have High Keytones or say nothing at all. Never, was I given insulin when needed. My family was secretly sending insulin through the mail. If I would have been caught with the syringes in the Army the Criminal Investigation Division would have been all over my ass !

Serving in the military would be an injustice to your body. Its bad enough for a healthy person. But, a diabetic must surely loose life span years or develop complications much quicker. Due to stress and pushing the limits of physical endurance. You can't eat military food. The food they serve you in Training would kill you. The foods have extreme High Carbahydrates and Calories. One meal could range from 2-6 thousand calories. These meals are created high speed performance. I would have FAILED Basic Training if it wasn't for my family. I have 4 uncles, all Army Officers Lt. Col and above; my father was a Army Officer also. They would visit with the Training Command often. You see I was hospitalized for 2 days x five times. I missed 10 days of Basic Training. Anybody else would have been discharged or Reclassed (recycled through the training to day one).

You will have challenges trying to get a government civillian job. Employers tend not to hire persons with Chronic life threatening diseases. Unless, you have an advanced degree a JD, PHD, MD, DO etc.... Sure there are exceptions. But, with diabetes you have good days and bad days. Sure you can get a job that doesn't require a REAL PHYSICAL. But, you may loose that job if you take sick days.

Again, the VA offers low cost medical. So do all County Hospitals. Either way you have proof of no income or poverty income to get low cost medical assistance.

Final point, none of us in this room would be ALIVE, if we didn't undergo chronic hormone treatment. The Diabetes disease is a very serious disease. Question? If you had Controlled HIV or Controlled Cancer would you continue your military pursuit? Controlled Type 1 Diabetes is the same. (All three being life threatening). Only 3%-5% of all diabetes have Type 1 Diabetes. Its an End Stage diabetes. You have to monitor and treat it or you will suffer the consequences. Military service will compromise your treatment of this disease.
Long Lost Member
Total Posts: 2
Registered on: ‎08-30-2010

Military and Diabetes

Hi all,

A topic close to my heart, which still pisses me off to this day.

I was a National Guard member (SSG) for 7 years in an artillery batt, recently selected (after 2 years of trying) to go to warrant school. ON A DRILL WEEKEND I was hospitalized with what turned out to be Type 1. Went in the hospital after going to drill, loading for AT, and feeling like garbage. My BG was over 900, dehydrated, the works.

The next month I was back at Drill to be called in the the Battery commanders office, after I had turned in my medical papers about what happened. Long story short, he told me I would be discharged, as "medically unfit for retention", and that my carreer and any shot of continuing to Warrant school, was over. In the very next sentence he stated that since I had recently gone through a army physical, I did not need another for a couple of years, and that I didn't really HAVE to tell anyone. Wrong answer! Then if anything went wrong it would be my fault? No Way!

So after a year and a half of waiting, and still having to go to drill, i stopped going to drill, as I had to take time off from my regular job, making much more money, to go. I got some calls asking why I wasn't there, and told them my career was over, so hurry up and get the papers done. The next week I was out. Funny how that worked. I felt USED!

Then I find out that as a Guard member, even getting sick on a drill weekend, I receive NOTHING! I got a handshake, and a too bad, and was sent packing. NO TYPE 1's ALLOWED IN THE ARMY. I offered to stay in a training unit, as that was what I am good at is teaching, nope. No disability, no acknowledgement of service, NOTHING AT ALL!

I went all through my Senators and Legislator offices and they did some digging over the course of a couple of years, to come back and say the same thing. Guardsmen get NOTHING! After being deployed a couple of times, seven years of service, see ya!

I am now a SGT in my County Sheriff's Department, working the job day to day, but no Army career, because of this disease!
Long Lost Member
Total Posts: 15
Registered on: ‎08-18-2010

Military and Diabetes

Being a type 1 I feel like I would be a liability in the military. While there are alot of things you can do in the military to contribute as a T1 the whole purpose of the military is to fight if need be, to defend and protect. Being a T1 there is no way you could go on the front lines worrying about your blood sugars.