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Regional Commissions

Task Force for Regional Commissions

Mission, Organisation and Agenda


  1. To help develop the philosophy, structure and function of the Regional Commissions of the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE)

  2. To help link the work of the Regional Commissions with that of the Executive Committee of the ILAE and vice versa
Regions: Commission Chair
  European Svein Johannessen _ Norway
  Asian/Oceanian Chong Tin Tan _ Malaysia
  Latin American Juvenal Gutierrez Moctezuma _ Mexico
  North American Jeffrey Noebels _ USA
  Eastern Mediterranean Basim Yaqub _ Saudi Arabia
  African Not yet identified

Martin Brodie has been appointed an ex officio member of all Regional Commissions.

 Members: Martin J. Brodie, Chair
  Peter Wolf
  Yoshiaki Mayanagi
  Chair of each Regional Commission


  1. Regional Commissions will consist of representatives elected by local Chapters together with a chair and secretary appointed by the president of the ILAE. Chapters can belong to only one region.
  2. Regional Commissions can expect to meet 1-3 times a year and must submit an annual budget for approval to the Executive Committee of the ILAE.
  3. Regional Councils may be set up to include members from all local Chapters. Councils can be expected to meet once per year.
  4. Regional Commissions should aim to develop, stimulate and coordinate the epileptology agenda in their part of the world.
  5. Regional Commissions should promote the activities of local Chapters, encourage similar policies and administrative structures among local Chapters, and facilitate their involvement within the global ILAE agenda.
  6. Regional Commissions should coordinate local educational activities via the formation of a Regional Epilepsy Academy.
  7. Regional Commissions should run their congresses under the auspices of the ILAE/IBE meetings organisation. Similar guidelines govern all international regional congresses.
  8. Regional Commissions should review epilepsy services and the size of the treatment gap in each country and aim to improve the former and reduce the latter.
  9. Regional Commissions should develop a Declaration on Epilepsy and a White Paper on Epilepsy with the aim of stimulating local medico-political initiatives and improving patient care.
  10. The Task Force will assist Regional Commissions in defining their constitution, which should be as homogeneous as possible among different regions. Its aim will be to encourage concordance with ILAE structures, regulations and programmes.
  11. The Task Force will help broker the two-way communication between Regional Commissions and the Executive Committee of the ILAE dealing, in particular, with local problems or controversies.
  12. The Task Force will help identify and develop projects common to more than one region.

As the Chair of each Regional Commission will be submitting his own report, I will confine myself to comments on the state of the process in each region. I attach also an updated summary of the mission and agenda of this Task Force.

  1. Commission on European Affairs (Svein Johannessen, Chair)
    This group is well established and well organised. It has a vigorous agenda and a clear focus. The biannual European congress provides a template for other regions. Elections for the executive committee and scientific advisory board of EUREPA (European Academy of Epilepsy) have taken place and this organisation is now firmly ensconced within the Regional Commission. Arrangements are underway for the 6th European Congress on Epileptology scheduled to take place in Vienna from 30 May-3 June 2004. A "Working Group for Quality Care" has been set up and the "Subcommission for Central/Eastern Europe" is active and ambitious.
  2. Commission on Asian and Oceanic Affairs (Chong Tin Tan, Chair)
    This group is active and effective in terms of its excellent outreach teaching programme. The regional congress in Japan in September 2002 was successful, but did not attract many delegates from outside the host country. The 5th Asian and Oceanian Epilepsy Congress will take place in Bangkok from 28-31 August in 2004 under the aegis of the ILEA/IBE congress organisation. The aim is to develop a scientifically and financially successful regional international congress, which will attract delegates from all Chapters and unaffiliated countries and obtain funding from local and international sectors of the pharmaceutical industry. Arrangements are well underway and the scientific programme is under development. The concept of an Asian and Oceanian Epilepsy Academy has been embraced and Masakazu Seino has agreed to head a Subcommission to develop the teaching programme.
  3. Commission for Latin American Affairs (Juvenal Gutierrez Monteczuma, Chair).
    This commission is still in the development stage. The agenda is largely in evolution. The congress in Brazil in May 2002 was successful, but was organised by and largely for the local Chapter. The 3rd Latin American Epilepsy Congress will be held in Mexico City from 2-5 July 2004 and will be run by the ILAE/IBE congress organisation. The aim is to develop a successful regional international meeting with the full involvement of all local Chapters. However, there is less pharmaceutical industry money available in this region to underpin the work of this Commission. Discussions are yet to take place regarding the setting up of a Latin American Epilepsy Academy.
  4. North American Commission (Jeffrey Noebels, Chair)
    This commission consists currently of the USA and Canada. Liaison with the AES is being explored to identify areas of mutual interest. A different agenda will be required than for the other Regional Commissions.
  5. Eastern Mediterranean Commission (Basim Yaqub, Chair)
    Preliminary work is being undertaken to set up this Regional Commission. The question whether to appoint or elect the first membership remains to be resolved. All relevant paperwork has been sent to the Chair.
  6. African Commission
    No action has been taken on this Commission as yet. An African Convention will be held at the Lisbon meeting.

The first meeting of the Task Force for Regional Commissions will take place during the 25th International Epilepsy Congress in Lisbon on Tuesday 14 October 2003. Members include Peter Wolf, Yoshi Mayanagi and the five chairs of the regional commissions. The Chair of the Interregional Task Force, Cigdem Özkara, and the International Director of Meetings, Richard Holmes, will be invited to attend.

Martin J. Brodie, Chair
Task Force for Regional Commissions
1 August 2003

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