A charity has urged NHS officials to ensure that all children with severe epilepsy are given devices that alert their parents if they have a seizure during the night.
The Muir Maxwell Trust, which provides epilepsy alarms to parents as part of its work to support children and their families coping with the condition, said that it is struggling to meet rising demand for the devices.
The alarm alerts parents if their child is having a seizure during sleep by making a loud noise, enabling them to put the youngster in the recovery position
and administer emergency medication if necessary.
The NHS does not currently fund the devices, which cost around £740, leaving families to pay out the money themselves or rely on handouts, the charity said.
Ann Maxwell, founder of the charity, said: “As a charity, the Muir Maxwell Trust is unable to explore the root causes and ultimately the cures for epilepsy whilst our funds and attention are being pulled in the direction of managing the symptoms, and meeting the costs of care.
“Epilepsy alarms are just one example of the problems we face. While generous donations and financial support we receive are helping us to provide assistance to many people, we’re simply unable to meet rising demand.
“The government has a moral obligation to provide ongoing care and support to sufferers of severe epilepsy and their families.
“By funding devices like epilepsy alarms and offering assistance such as long term residential care, this would free up organisations like the MMT, who are at the cutting edge, enabling us to finally find possible cures for this often devastating condition.”
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