Epilepsy partnership launched

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As part of Epilepsy Awareness Month, the Chatham-Kent’s fire, EMS and police services are teaming up with Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario to identify vulnerable populations and launching a joint community safety partnership.

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The concept is for the groups to work together to increase the public safety and protection of those who are affected by epilepsy/seizure disorders and their families.

“The CHiRP visit was quick and easy,” said Patricia Wright, a client of Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario, who requested a CHiRP Home Safety Check recently. “The firefighters checked my alarms to make sure they were working correctly and had batteries. Then we discussed home escape planning and what my safest option would be.”

Epilepsy affects approximately one per cent of the population in Ontario, and managing safety risks associated with seizures is of upmost importance regardless of seizure type.

Developing a seizure safety plan, and reducing risk in the home and the community are necessary pieces of managing seizures. This partnership with local fire, police and emergency services will help individuals in our community living with epilepsy feel and live safer and be part of the community in a meaningful way.

According to fire officials, the hope is this partnership will also encourage individuals living with epilepsy to submit their vital information to the Vulnerable Sector Registry, a database that will be used by police and other emergency services during a crisis situation. In the event of an emergency, responding officers and other responding emergency service workers will have immediate access to this registry. This can help provide vital information in a timely manner and reduces the likelihood that critical information is not overlooked.

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