The day of September 15, 2011 will be remembered in Europe as a historical date for all people engaged in the fight against epilepsy. On that date, the Parliament of the European Union (EU) approved the Written Declaration on Epilepsy, a landmark document which calls for the political establishment to improve the lives of people with epilepsy by promoting public awareness, quality of care and scientific research. The Declaration has resulted already in several positive initiatives in a number of countries, and its impact extends beyond the boundaries of the EU. The purpose of this article is to explain the background that motivated the drafting of the Declaration, to describe the processes that led to its approval, and to discuss future developments in the implementation of the plan set out by the Declaration. It is hoped that the activities described in this report will provide an inspiration to further actions in other parts of the world to mobilize stakeholders, address diagnostic and treatment gaps in epilepsy care, and stimulate greater allocation to resources to epilepsy research
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