Epilepsy Action Australia’s services include:
- Individual service plans
- Individual client education
- Seizure management planning
- Community education and training
- Memory workshops
- Residential camps for families and youth
- Epilepsy nurse support to hospital clinics
- Travelling Epilepsy Bears
- My Epilepsy Diary
- ONLINE ACADEMY
It is estimated that nearly 500,000 people in Australia will be diagnosed with epilepsy at some stage in life.
Epilepsy Action Australia (EAA) is committed to delivering an equitable and consistent service to all people in Australia and is working to deliver higher, national levels of support, building services around health education and interventions to facilitate self-management.
EAA has delivered services nationwide for more than a decade and is the largest provider of specialist epilepsy services in the community for people with epilepsy. For several years EAA has been working on a national service strategy as the solution to the problem of meeting the needs of Australians living with epilepsy - incorporating the design of innovative services and delivery tools to facilitate the availability of comprehensive services across Australia, accessible to people with epilepsy, their families and their carers, no matter where they live.
EAA has developed high level staff expertise and a rich base of information about epilepsy, particularly vested in our Epilepsy Nurse Educators. We deliver services via phone, videoconference and internet and have a physical presence in most states and territories.
Clients indicate that living with epilepsy can be isolating and the diagnosis is often associated with anxiety and depression. To respond to the emotional and psychosocial needs of people with epilepsy EAA provides Adventure Therapy Camps that allow people with epilepsy to experience the dignity of risk in a supported environment. These programs build confidence, self esteem, trust and courage as well as teach life skills and provide opportunities for meeting others with epilepsy.
Individual service plans
Any person who has identified needs associated with their epilepsy can receive individualised services and support from Epilepsy Action Australia.
All services are delivered in partnership with the person with epilepsy or the family of a child with epilepsy. The service consists of information provision, case management and service provision to address individual needs through group and/or individual service activities.
Individual service programs commence with service planning. This includes a Needs Assessment and the development of an Individual Service Plan.
For the majority of people who request Epilepsy Action Australia services, the needs assessment is conducted over the phone by a case manager, though in some instances the assessment is conducted in the person’s home or another community setting.
To arrange an individual service plan please call 1300 37 45 37 or email email@example.com
Individual client education
Education for individuals with epilepsy and their family members about aspects of epilepsy and its management is fundamental to the ability to participate fully and safely in everyday activities.
Epilepsy Action Australia tailors education specifically for the individual, taking into consideration the specific diagnosis and manifestation of the person’s epilepsy and may include:
- Understanding the diagnosis of epilepsy
- Understanding the medical management and side effects of medication
- Understanding seizure triggers and how lifestyle can be adjusted to avoid or minimise exposure to triggers
- The accurate documentation of a seizure diary such that seizure activity can be recorded thoroughly and accurately to inform medical management of the seizures
- Safety precautions necessary for the individual person’s epilepsy
- First aid and emergency medication training
Education sessions can be provided to the person with epilepsy or in a group setting (e.g. with family members/ friends).
To arrange an education session please call 1300 37 45 37 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Seizure management planning
It is in the best interest of a person experiencing seizures to minimise both the impact of seizures on their daily life and the risk of injury in the event of a seizure.
Assistance with Seizure Management Planning is a core service offered by Epilepsy Action Australia.
Each person’s seizures will be different and specific to the individual and seizure management plans will require tailoring to each person’s needs and circumstances.
A Seizure Management Plan (SMP) is a document that contains critical information for a person(s) assisting someone who experiences seizures in order to minimise the impact of seizures and reduce the risk of injury.
The process of seizure management planning involves:
- consulting with a client/parent and all identified stakeholders,
- documenting a plan, and
- providing education and training as required.
Implementation of a Seizure Management Plan is a collective responsibility of all participants.
Sometimes seizure management planning involves the development of a plan for administration of emergency medications. This service is provided by trained Epilepsy Nurse Educators who regularly undergo competency assessment in the administration of emergency medication.
To arrange a seizure management plan please call 1300 37 45 37 or email email@example.com
Community education and training
Education and Training is provided by Epilepsy Action Australia to relevant professionals, disability workers, paid carers, schools, workplaces etc in order to increase the competence and confidence of various people who work with people who have epilepsy.
The primary objectives are:
- To reduce risks and safety hazards associated with epilepsy and seizures
- To increase general awareness and reduce stigma associated with epilepsy within professional groups
There are currently two streams of Education and Training:
- General Epilepsy Awareness
- Emergency Medication Training
To arrange community education or training please call 1300 37 45 37 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Some, but not all, people with epilepsy will experience changes to thinking, perception, or memory. Epilepsy disrupts normal brain activity and therefore, depending on the type of seizure and where in the brain it occurs, different abilities can be affected. Changes in thinking can occur before, during or after seizures and can be temporary or long term.
Some anti-epileptic medications, particularly if high doses are taken over a long period of time, are known to have an effect on memory function.
Memory difficulties can have an enormous impact on a person’s day to day functioning and their confidence in daily activities.
Epilepsy Action Australia’s Memory Workshops are designed for people with epilepsy who are experiencing mild to moderate memory difficulties.
The workshops provide participants an opportunity to:
- Find out more about memory
- Learn about the factors that impact on memory
- Explore practical strategies for managing memory difficulties
- Try exercises that aim to improve memory
- Meet others and share experiences
Residential camps for families and youth
Research has shown that people with epilepsy and their families often feel isolated, anxious and overprotective. Epilepsy Action Australia has responded by funding and facilitating residential camps for people with epilepsy and their families, with “adventure therapy” provided through the engagement of a specialist camp provider.
Adventure Therapy Camps aim to use recreation activities to change the attitudes and beliefs of people with epilepsy and their families. These camps provide fun activities to help children and adults to rebuild confidence, self esteem and trust. Knowing that camp facilitators understand epilepsy helps adults to relax. Spending time with other families promotes peer support and peer learning, while Epilepsy Nurse Educators can provide specialised information about epilepsy.
Camps are usually held over three days, and in various locations across Australia.
The activities undertaken at the camp are designed to extend skills, such as problem solving and team work, while also enhancing children’s self esteem, confidence and trust. Most importantly, the activities are safe and fun.
Supporting epilepsy clinics
Most major hospitals around Australia operate clinics for people with epilepsy or with neurological conditions. Epilepsy Action Australia offers support to such clinics with the provision of an Epilepsy Educator who is a Registered Nurse. The Registered Nurse is available to meet with patients and their families at the clinic for the provision of information about epilepsy and related services and to follow up with individual service provision or education programs in the community as required.
Some of the benefits include:
- Information about community supports is made available to the person with epilepsy at the same time as medical care
- Referrals for community supports and services are made in a timely manner
- Vital information such as safety issues and seizure recording can be discussed at the time of diagnosis or treatment to prevent accidents and aid in the management of the epilepsy
- The person with epilepsy has the opportunity to ask questions and seek information at the time of their medical appointment – a service which medical professionals do not always have time to provide
For more information please call 1300 37 45 37 or email email@example.com