Sunday, May 25, 2008

Australian government promises help for family dealing with seizures

The NSW Government will announce $5million in funding today for services to treat people with epilepsy.

Health Minister Reba Meagher said the new Comprehensive Epilepsy Service would provide assessment and treatment for an extra 400 people each year.

The funding over three years would go towards nursing and medical staff, a medical registrar in neurology and assessment and monitoring equipment.

A co-ordination centre would be also established to collect data and share information across NSW.

Epilepsy is a disruption of the normal activity of the brain that results in recurrent seizures. It affects about 200,000 Australians.

"While there have been significant advances in anti-epileptic medications over the years, in around 30per cent of cases epilepsy cannot be adequately managed by medication, and some experience more than 20 seizures a day," Ms Meagher said. "For those people, this service will provide access to better treatment options, including surgery, and a better chance at managing their epilepsy."

Kayla Sterchow, 10, underwent surgery to try to tame her extreme form of epilepsy, which makes her prone to violent rages.


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