Dear European members
Dear Colleagues and friends
I would like to thank all of you for electing me to the post of the Chair of the IBE European Regional Executive Committee for 2009-2013. It is an honour that gives me the opportunity to work closely with you in bringing epilepsy to light, upgrading care and working towards a better quality of life for those less privileged Europeans with epilepsy.
The previous EREC has detailed the basic strategies for our work and I am particularly thankful to the previous chair, Peter Dahlqvist, for his wonderful work including the two very successful European Epilepsy and Society Conferences. I also thank Andreas Habberstad for his ideas and constructive contributions. It was with deep sadness that we lost in early 2008 one of our Board member Jónína Björg Gudmundsdottir. Seppo Sarkkula and I will continue the previous work together with the new members of the Board Michael Alexa, Aisling Farrell and Victoria Dimech. Congratulations to each of you and welcome to the team. I am sure that you will feed me with ideas and that we will all work towards a very successful new term in office.
We must above all identify European issues that bring us closer together and promote common projects under of the auspices of IBE. There are countries in Europe that have not yet had the opportunity to deal in everyday life with epilepsy issues let alone to create an IBE member. I am sure that all of you have good ideas that will greatly facilitate the success of raising awareness and help those in need to join the IBE family. For this, we have to create a network of professionals and lay people throughout Europe to put in to action plans and ideas matched to the specific regions, in collaboration with IBE. These plans based primarily on ideas and suggestions coming from professionals and lay people from the region. The EREC will study all these plans carefully and try to implement whatever is feasible.
The Regional Executive Committee will work hard to coordinate IBE activities, organise forums, increase membership, identify significant regional issues and build on the work of the previous executive committee. A primary task is to work towards the next Epilepsy and Society Congress 2010. Furthermore I believe, that a close collaboration among the regional chairs will accumulate and combine suggestions worldwide and plan/act for each region accordingly for a better quality of life for people with epilepsy.
Chair, IBE European Regional Executive Committee
Member: Commission of European Affairs