The bill would make sure that if a child has a seizure at school someone would be trained on how to handle the situation.
- The hearing is underway right now at the state Capitol on a bill that could help save the lives of children who have seizures. That bill is being championed by a young man who has epilepsy himself. Our political specialist Shaun Boyd, live at the Capitol right now. And Shaun, what does this bill do? Explain.
SHAUN BOYD: Well, Allen, very simply, it makes sure that, if a kid has a seizure at school, there is someone there who knows what to do. In Colorado, nearly 8,000 school age kids have epilepsy, and because many schools don't have nurses, there is often no one who has training in seizure protocol, putting these students at risk. The young man behind the bill knows that firsthand.
Joey Quintana was in the fourth grade when he had his first seizure. The first of many that would happen at school. Diagnosed with epilepsy, he would undergo surgery, and a decade later, is seizure free. But there is one episode he can't forget.
- A teacher came out and started holding my arms down during my seizures. I could still see, hear, and feel everything. With more stories, it's not unique. This is something that's happening to students all across Colorado, and in some instances, there are injuries.
SHAUN BOYD: Quintana is now on a mission at the state Capitol to change that.
KYLE MULLICA: When Joey brought me his story, I wanted to do something about it.
SHAUN BOYD: Represenative Kyle Mullica, the sponsor of Joey's Law, which would require every school have someone trained in seizure protocol.
KYLE MULLICA: Another piece of the bill is that it encourages parents to work with the school, and work with the school nurse, and work with their pediatrician to come up with this plan that could be submitted to the school. So that we're ready, so that school's ready if there is a seizure that happens.
- And this bill is not just aimed at providing comfort to students, but to also protect staff, students, and prevent possible injury or even death.
SHAUN BOYD: As for the bill being named after him--
- I think it's great, but you know, this isn't about me. This is more so to protect all the students across Colorado.
SHAUN BOYD: The bill applies to all public K-12 schools in Colorado. Quintana is now a freshman at the University of Denver, and maybe no surprise, he is majoring in public policy. His bill passed its first committee today unanimously. At the Capitol, Shaun Boyd, covering Colorado first.