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15 October 2015

Epilepsy Society pays tribute to epilepsy ambassador

Epilepsy Society's medical director Professor Ley Sander has paid tribute to his 'good friend and former colleague' Hanneke de Boer, an ambassador for epilepsy over the last fifty years who has died recently.

Professor Sander said he had known Hanneke for many years and that she had been a great friend to Epilepsy Society during the 1980s when she worked at the Chalfont Centre in Buckinghamshire.

Hanneke worked at SEIN, The Epilepsy Institutes of the Netherlands where Professor Sander is also scientific director. She was also instrumental in helping to set up the Global Campaign against Epilepsy, a joint initiative of the World Health Organization, the International League Against Epilepsy and the International Bureau for Epilepsy.

'The global campaign to bring epilepsy out of the shadows and improve the healthcare of people worldwide was one of Hanneke's greatest achievements,' said Professor Sander. 'Without her tireless efforts, we would not have had the recent WHO resolution for countries to strengthen their provision of epilepsy care.

'Hanneke was also dedicated to improving the employment prospects of people with epilepsy and did much to empower people with epilepsy and to educate employers about the condition and how it should not be a barrier to getting a job.

'Hanneke was a real advocate for people with epilepsy and will be much missed.'

You can read more about the WHO resolution here.