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Epilepsy Hawke’s Bay raises $76,000 for EEG machi

12 September 2005

Epilepsy Hawke’s Bay raises $76,000 for EEG machine

Epilepsy Hawke’s Bay will hand over a cheque for $76,000 to Hawke’s Bay District Health Board (HBDHB) chief executive, Chris Clarke, at a function to be held at 5:00pm today, Monday 12 September 2005 in the HBDHB corporate office.

Funds have been raised over the past six months, by the Hawke’s Bay branch of Epilepsy New Zealand. Branch president, Brenda Fine, said the branch was aware Hawke’s Bay Hospital’s neurology service doesn’t currently have an Electroencephalography (EEG) machine. Anyone requiring this test has to travel to Palmerston North, which can be a major inconvenience. Once the machine is up and running, it is expected 200-300 tests will be carried out each year. This need was the motivation for the fundraising.

Brenda said the funds donated would pay for an EEG machine and go towards the salary of a technician. An EEG is an essential tool used in the diagnosis of epilepsy. It records and measures patterns of electrical charges from the millions of nerve cells in the brain. An EEG test helps neurologists see what is happening in the brain of a person who is experiencing seizures. It is also used occasionally as an aid to assessing patients in coma. Most referrals for EEGs are from neurology and paediatrics.

Chris Clarke said the DHB was extremely grateful to Epilepsy Hawke’s Bay for the donation, “This is going to improve the lives of so many people, who currently have to travel to Palmerston North for their EEGs,” he said.

There were a number of donations and applications to Trusts for donations. The results speak for themselves:

Donor amount
Flaxmere Licensing Trust $15,000
Sovereign Spirit $12,500
Springhill Charitable Trust & Frimley Foundation $10,000
Hastings Building Society $10,000
Heretaunga Trust $8,000
Century Foundation (Fireworks Display) $6,500
Joan Fernie Trust $5,000
Anonymous Trust $5,000
Vincent Fabian (sponsored100 km bike ride) $2,000
Riverside Wines $1,700

Brenda Fine thanked all those who supported their efforts. “In addition to financial support, we also received wonderful assistance from Vern King of VKA Advertising who produced printed materials for the campaign, free of charge. People have been very supportive,” Brenda said.

Sovereign Spirit is a community sponsorship initiative from New Zealand’s largest life insurer. The Sovereign spirit sponsorship allows Sovereign staff to vote each month, and make a decision on which health-related community charity will receive a donation. In addition to a lump sum donation, charities also receive money raised through Sovereign’s ‘Spirit Day’, a monthly casual dress day for staff.

Brenda Fine said Vince Fabian of Taradale who has Epilepsy made a tremendous effort taking part in the 100km Rotorua to Taupo sponsored bike race. “He took four and a quarter hours to complete the ride and raised $2,000 in sponsorship.”

The EEG machine has been purchased and the DHB have started recruiting a technician to operate the machine. It is expected to be up and running in the next few months.


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