Epilepsy Has Had a Voice in the 2021 Budget Consultation
On August 21st, 2020, the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services released the “Report on the Budget 2021 Consultation”. This report was created based on the recommendations that they received during the 2021 Budget Consultation Process, which Kim Davidson, CEO & Executive Director of the BC Epilepsy Society, took part in, presenting to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services on behalf of the BC Epilepsy Society on June 11th, 2020. You can find out more about Kim’s presentation here.
The “Report on the Budget 2021 Consultation” has been split up into two volumes. You can find Volume 1 of this report here and Volume 2 of this report here.
Within the report, the need for increased epilepsy funding is outlined, with the following key messages being stated in Volume 1 of the report:
- The BC Epilepsy Society (page 56) made several recommendations for supports and treatment for British Columbians living with epilepsy, including funding for system navigators, expanding programs, creating an epilepsy ketogenic diet program, creating new neuropsychologist positions, covering specific medications, and increasing public awareness. They noted that pharmaceutical interventions do not control seizures for many individuals living with epilepsy; however, access to alternative therapies, such as brain surgery, brain stimulators and a ketogenic diet, are currently limited in BC.
- Recommendation 66 (page 67) Provide appropriate supports and services for British Columbians living with chronic and complex diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, arthritis, brain injury, cancer, diabetes, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, and brain injury, including increasing investments in the Chronic Complex Diseases program.
This mention of epilepsy in the budget report and the need for increased funding for epilepsy being outlined by the BC Legislative Assembly and the BC Government is a first for epilepsy in BC. We hope this exciting news motivates us all to do our part in helping to end the epilepsy crisis in BC!
If you would like to help us end the epilepsy crisis in BC, please consider signing our petition here and learning how to write a letter to your MLA on the subject here.