$45k gift to assist diagnose people with epilepsy

Peter and Margaret Long (left) with Dr. Ilisapeci Tuibeqa (Head of Paediatrics) with the portable ECG machine in Suva. Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

THE founder of a charity organisation from the UK shared an encounter a few years ago with an infant who was epileptic in Fiji, but couldn’t afford medication as it was expensive.

Margaret Long of Children of Fiji said that experience was the reason behind the gift of a $45,000 portal electroencephalography (EEG) which was handed over to the Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva yesterday.

“Couple of years ago we came across a family and their child was having fits, infantile seizures.

“I think probably where our interest in this area sort of started. “We were contacted by the father that the medication wasn’t working, although there was another medication available but it was expensive,” Mrs Long said.

CWMH paediatric department head Dr Ilisapeci Tuibeqa said the machine would help them diagnose people with epilepsy.

She added that motivated the couple to establish a charitable organisation to support children.

“They have also sent four children for individualised medical treatment abroad, this EEG machine will go a long way in helping the medical team and the paediatric team in diagnosing epileptic and it will valuable to all patients, the first of its kind for the country,” Dr Tuibeqa said.