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WHEREAS, epilepsy awareness days are recognized nationwide and globally to change the conversation around epilepsy and seizures, and to engage everyone to improve and save lives of those living with epilepsy; and
WHEREAS, epilepsy is a brain disorder characterized by recurrent and unprovoked seizures that can affect anyone, at any age, any time; and
WHEREAS, epilepsy is one of the most common neurological conditions, and approximately 3.4 million people in the U.S. live with epilepsy and seizures; and
WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that there are 84,800 individuals in Virginia that live with epilepsy and seizures, and 11,000 of those affected are children; and
WHEREAS, 470,000 children live with epilepsy in the U.S., and a 2015 CDC study found that 36% of students aged 6 to 17 years with epilepsy were more likely to have missed 11 or more days of school in the past year on average; and
WHEREAS, one in ten persons will have at least one seizure during his or her lifetime; and
WHEREAS, one in 26 persons will be diagnosed with epilepsy during his or her lifetime; and
WHEREAS, the public is often unable to recognize common seizure types, or how to respond with appropriate first aid; and
WHEREAS, through action together on Epilepsy Heroes Day, the Commonwealth of Virginia can increase public knowledge about epilepsy and seizure first aid and change the way people think about epilepsy and seizures;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize March 26, 2020, as EPILEPSY HEROES DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.