After the International Epilepsy Congress in Paris in September 2005, the Asian Oceanian Regional Committee divided to South East Asia and Western Pacific committee. After the 2005 meeting in Paris, China, Mongolia, and Philippines became new members in Western-Pacific region. Western Pacific region now have 10 members including Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mongolia, Philippine, Singapore, Taiwan and New Zealand.
In new constitution, each committee has one regional vice president, one chair, one vice-chair and one secretary to take the charge of the regional matters. Andrew Pan from Singapore was elected as our Vice Chair and Tseng Yuan-Fu from Taiwan was elected as secretary in March 2006. In April 2006, Hidemoto Kubota was elected as our regional chair. And Shung-Lon Lai was elected as vice president to represent the executive comitte of IBE from our region.
Our first main activity was regional congress held in Kuala Lumpur from 16-19th November, 2006. We thank current AOEA president M.M. Mendirata for his great effort to organize a successful meeting. IBE held a get-together party for the inauguration of Western-pacific region and Southeast region at the meeting. We had a one day program in the meeting. Our members had a great show up (more than 150 persons) and they also learned a lot from the speakers experiences. In our region, we had three outstanding persons, one from Mongolia, one from Singapore, one from Taiwan to speak out their experience to combat the disease in their country. This is great for them to accomplish such a great task in their life.
The second main event was designed to promote the formation of self-help organization or supporting group of persons with epilepsy in our new member China, the CAOA member (Professor Cong-Tin Tan, Jing-Jane Tsai and regional IBE office Hidemoto Kubota, Shung-Lon Lai work together to hold a meeting in May 26~27, 2007 in Shanghai, China. In the meeting, the speakers introduced the concept, the model and the implementation of self-help organization or supporting group and shared the experience of the current successful self-help organizations or supporting groups in Asia region.
In August 2007, we are very delight to know that our effort already had a very good result. The supporting group was established in Huashan hospital. More than 400 persons attended the first patient group meeting. The first journal hippocampus for the persons with epilepsy was published in October. The front page is as follows.
The third big event Symposium For People With Epilepsy and Their Cares was organized by our vice chair Andrew Pan in conjunction with the 27th international epilepsy congress in July 7th, 2007. The purpose of this symposium had three dimensions: to identify critical issue and challenges faced by people with epilepsy, to investigate in depth upcoming information regarding epilepsy, to encourage those attending to form new friendships and to foster closer ties between local and international peers. The main topic included epilepsy and education, and on cognitive problems that can be caused by epilepsy and drugs; employment; driving issues, facing problems of women with epilepsy.
During the Congress, our Philippine member invited Marshall and Shunglon Lai to attend their annual meeting in September. They attended the Philippine meeting and found that the local chapter did a very great job in many aspects regarding the improvement of life for the people with epilepsy. As everyone knows, Philippine had thousands of islands, the care for many islanders with epilepsy are very difficult. They established 6 branches through north to south in their country and work with the Philippine League Against Epilepsy to hold symposiums, communicate with local general practice doctor about epilepsy.
In the annual meeting, we are very moved by the couple to share their experiences about their marriage (from the first date, to marriage, to live with family). We also learned a lot about the work done at Philippine regarding their effort of doing global campaign against epilepsy. Marshall delived a speech regarding the employment and Shunglon Lai talked about how to make the linkage of regional and global epilepsy organization. Shunglon Lai encouraged our Philippine chapter to apply the promising strategies program to help their organization.