Resources for Veterans with Epilepsy
Jan Spencer, MSW, LCSW
January 8, 2014
Sleep and Epilepsy
August 22, 2013
Eilis Boudreau, MD, PhD
1. Federal and State VA benefits
2. County Veteran Service Officers (VSO)
Information on Epilepsy
1. Epilepsy Center of Excellence (EC0E) – US Dept. of Veterans Affairs
3. The Epilepsy Foundation
4. National Association of Epilepsy Centers (NAEC)
5. National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke (NINDS)
6. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
8. Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE)
9. Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC)
Employment and Disability
1. American With Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Americans with Disability Act was signed into law on July 26, 1990 by President George H.W. Bush. It is one of America’s most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation that prohibits discrimination and guarantees that people with disabilties have the same opportunities as everyone else to participate in the mainstream of American life: to enjoy employment opportunities. The ADA is an “equal opportunity law for people with disabilities."
2. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)/Supplemental Security Income (SSI):
Apply online OR call 1-800-772-1213 for an appointment with your local Social Security Office.
1. State of Oregon
To determine licensing of an applicant with epilepsy or loss of consciousness, the Oregon Motor Vehicles Division follows the medical criteria guidelines outlined for the Driver Medical Certification Program. The Program may require that a person reestablish eligibility for licensure at reasonable intervals, determined at the discretion of the medical determination officer. [§ 807.090 (3)]. Restricted licenses are available. [§ 807.120].
A medical determination officer from the Division may require the person to submit a report from his or her physician or to submit to further medical evaluation by a physician selected by the officer. The officer then must supply a determination of eligibility statement that the condition does or does not interfere with his or her ability to drive. The officer must concur in the physician’s recommendation that the licensee or applicant is able to drive safely in order to renew or grant the license. [OR. REV. STAT. § 807.090 (2011)].
2. State of Washington
To be eligible for licensing, an individual must be seizure-free or free from losses of consciousness for 6 months, be under a physician’s care and on medication. However, if the person's physician wishes to waive the six-month period, the application must be documented and submitted to the department, and the information will then be taken under advisement. The department may request that an applicant submit to an examination. [WA. STAT. ANN. § 46.20.305 (2011)].
VA criteria for "service dog"
1. A Service Dog must be part of the Veteran’s treatment plan as well as part of the overall rehabilitation and restorative care of the Veteran.
2. A Service Dog evaluation and referral is a prosthetic prescriptive practice and a clinical decision.
3. If it is determined a Service Dog will likely enhance the Veterans’ rehabilitation and restorative care, all hardware and veterinary costs will be covered by the VA.
4. Veteran is responsible for all grooming and feeding costs.
5. Veterans must obtain the Seizure Dog from an accredited GD/SD organization.
Please direct any questions about resources to the Epilepsy Social Worker, Jan Spencer.
She can be reached at 503-220-8262 ext. 51661.