Bowie, Md., November 22, 2022 – Today, Governor Larry Hogan will light up the Governor’s House purple to not only recognize National Epilepsy Awareness Month, but to also celebrate the passage of Brynleigh’s Act (Senate Bill 299) and the bill’s namesake, Brynleigh Shillinger. Brynleigh, who lives with epilepsy and a rare genetic condition called tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), turned 9 years old on the same day. Maryland became the 15th state in the country to pass Seizure Safe Schools legislation in April 2022. Passage of this bill holds a special significance for the Epilepsy Foundation as it is headquartered in Maryland, and its success follows on the heels of similar legislation enacted in other states.
“Earlier this year, I was honored to sign legislation—also known as Brynleigh’s Act—that increases the amount of personnel in Maryland public schools required to complete professional seizure recognition and response training,” said Governor Hogan. “Our administration is proud to support efforts to raise awareness for epilepsy and advocate on behalf of tens of thousands of Marylanders across our state living with epilepsy.”
There are nearly 60,000 Marylanders living with active epilepsy, including almost 8,000 children and teenagers. Epilepsy affects everyone. Anyone can have a seizure and be diagnosed with epilepsy. Over a lifetime, 1 in 10 people will have a seizure, and 1 in 26 will develop epilepsy. The Epilepsy Foundation strives to educate the public and advocate for those we know, and those we don’t yet know, living with seizures.
According to the World Health Organization, epilepsy is the most common serious brain disorder worldwide with no age, racial, social class, national or geographic boundaries. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) estimates that 3.4 million people in the United States are affected by epilepsy. Epilepsy is the underlying tendency of the brain to produce seizures which are sudden abnormal bursts of electrical energy that disrupt brain functions.
About the Epilepsy Foundation
With a network of partners throughout the United States, the Epilepsy Foundation connects people to treatment, support, and resources; leads advocacy efforts; funds innovative research and the training of specialists; and educates the public about epilepsy and seizure first aid. In partnership with the CDC, the Epilepsy Foundation has helped to improve access to care for people with epilepsy, expanded its digital reach and online resources in homes across the country, and trained people in seizure recognition and first aid. To learn more visit epilepsy.com or call 1.800.332.1000.