Christine Elliott, Minister of Health
Dear Minister Elliott,
I am writing to show my support for including epilepsy education and support programs as part of the $267 million in funding for community care announced in this year’s provincial budget. These programs align with the government's priorities for community care: delivering frontline services, reducing pressure on hospitals and addressing hallway medicine, and supporting people living with epilepsy when and where they need it. It will also save the healthcare system money through reduced Emergency Room usage.
Helping people with epilepsy, and their families, better manage their condition, reduce seizure frequency, and deal with the many social and psychological challenges people living with epilepsy face is at the core of what Community Epilepsy Agencies do.
Ontario’s Community Epilepsy Agencies provide a valuable contribution to our healthcare system, however they receive no core government funding for their education and support programs.
A key part of epilepsy education is seizure first aid including when to go, and when not to go, to an Emergency Room following a seizure. By funding expanded programs through Ontario’s Community Epilepsy Agencies, the provincial government could save more than it spends on the program, through reduced Emergency Room usage. The program will also help address the Hallway Medicine crisis and ease pressure on hospitals by cutting down the number of unnecessary hospital visits following a seizure.
The support and education programs also help provide wraparound services for the many people living with both epilepsy and other conditions, like autism and mental health issues.