Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana Enters the Advocacy Arena by Championing Seizure Safe School Legislation

Legislative Advocacy Efforts Will Help Protect Almost 70,000 Hoosiers Living with Epilepsy

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Indianapolis — As part of its new advocacy program, the Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana (EFIN) today announced its plans to introduce Seizure Safe School legislation in the state, which would make certain that school personnel — such as nurses, teachers and volunteers — are not only prepared, but can recognize and respond appropriately and efficiently to a student experiencing a seizure. The legislation would require school personnel to complete a seizure recognition first-aid response training, life-saving seizure first aid training for students, maintenance of a seizure action plan for students living with epilepsy, and the storage of physician-directed emergency and non-emergency anti-convulsant medications.

“A seizure lasting longer than 5 minutes can result in neurological damage, and even death,” said Dr. Bettyjo Bouchey, associate dean and director of Online Academics at National Louis University, and EFIN’s Advocacy Leader. “Equipping our schools with knowledge, and school clinics with these medications, can save a child’s life. As a mother to a 14-year-old with primary, generalized epilepsy, I can attest to the importance of such advocacy efforts and policy. I consider myself lucky; not all schools are willing to work with every family to keep their child safe during, and after, a seizure.”

Epilepsy is the underlying tendency of the brain to produce seizures, which are sudden abnormal bursts of electrical energy that disrupt brain functions. One in 26 people will be diagnosed with epilepsy during their life. In Indiana alone, there are almost 70,000 Hoosiers living with epilepsy. Seizure Safe School legislation (the Lyndsey Crunk Act) was enacted in Kentucky in 2018 and about 15 states will be working on similar legislation in 2019.

“Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana is committed to fighting for the rights of everyone in the state impacted by epilepsy,” said Ryan Keys, executive director of the EFIN. “We are proud to be championing a bill that would make a huge difference in the lives of students living with epilepsy, and we’re looking forward to advancing our other advocacy efforts with non-medical switching and “fail-first” drug therapy.”

Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana is hosting an event on November 29 to officially launch its legislative advocacy efforts and educate the public about the Seizure Safe School legislation, which has received widespread attention from both the Senate and the House in the Indiana Legislature. The event will also serve as a platform to recruit volunteers from the epilepsy community to help EFIN rally supporters and testify to the importance of the bill once it is introduced next year.

The event will be held at Indiana Interchurch Building, Krannert Hall 1100 West 42nd Street, Krannert Hall, Indianapolis, IN 46208. To RSVP, please visit: https://efinadvocacy2019.eventbrite.com.

About the Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana

Epilepsy Foundation of Indiana serves people living with epilepsy in the state of Indiana. The Foundation supports the epilepsy community by fostering the wellbeing of children and adults affected by seizures through research programs, educational activities, advocacy, and direct services. For more information, please visit https://www.epilepsy.com/local/indiana-province-state.

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Contact Name: 
Ryan Keys | Executive Director
Contact Phone: 
(317) 759-1287
Contact Email: 

Our Mission

The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to lead the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy and to accelerate therapies to stop seizures, find cures, and save lives.

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