Public Policy Advocacy

Become an Advocate for the Epilepsy Community
The Epilepsy Foundation actively advocates at the state and federal level for public policies that support research and innovation, and to improve access to quality care for people living with epilepsy. Join us as we raise awareness with policy makers about the critical need for timely access to the right medications, and research that leads to new therapies, especially for the more than one million people living with epilepsy who experience intractable or uncontrolled seizures or have significant adverse effects to medication.

Sign up for Our Speak Up, Speak Out (SUSO) Advocacy Network
Use this tool to join our network of Speak Up Speak Out advocates.  Becoming part of this growing grassroots advocacy group ensures that you are kept up-to-date on issues that affect the 100,000 people with epilepsy and their families living in Michigan and the 3.4 million in the United States.

Share with us your name, address and email address, and we will send you advocacy action alerts and monthly updates.  Your address will allow us to identify your Member of Congress, and alert you to advocacy opportunities in your area.  Share your story with elected officials, in support of advancing the policy priorities of the epilepsy community, and stay up to date on policy developments through our monthly Highlights from the Hill e-newsletter.

Epilepsy Foundation's Advocacy Website - Visit to learn more about national public policy priorities, news from individual states, and how to get involved.

Learn & Share Conference Call: Public Policy Advocacy to Benefit the Epilepsy Community - Laura Weidner, Esq. & Rachel Patterson from the Epilepsy Foundation (recorded on June 2, 2021)


Access to Medication-Medicaid
In 2004, the Legislature enacted a law that Michigan Medicaid could not subject medications for the high-risk conditions of mental illness, epilepsy, HIV-AIDS, cancer, and organ replacement to prior authorization.  Potential delays often last at least two months and require a consumer to fail on two other "preferred" medications before possibly getting the one that the doctor originally prescribed.  The Epilepsy Foundation of Michigan does not support pre-authorization programs because of the possible delays in treatment.

We believe that treatment decisions should be made by the physician in partnership with the patient.  Therefore, we are advocating for permanent protection of the epilepsy medications in the Medicaid formulary from pre-authorization requirements.

We are incredibly grateful to Senator Margaret O’Brien, R-Portage, for her introduction of SB 823, that would make the Medicaid Protection for the epilepsy medications permanent and keep epilepsy a protected class!  This action, if passed, would  ensure greater protection for epilepsy medications for those on Medicaid.  Epilepsy medications are not interchangeable and people with epilepsy need meaningful access to the full range of physician-directed therapies that are available. 

Non-medical Switching
Non-medical switching occurs when patients have been “switched” to a new medication without their consent or the consent of their doctor.  In general, non-medical switching forces patients to be switched into generic or brand medication based on cost, and without patient or physician approval.  The Epilepsy Foundation of Michigan leads a coalition that focuses on this very important issue.  We have helped to create a very useful and informative website that will help educate people of their rights and what recourse they have when non-medical switching occurs.

Please visit our site and consider sharing your story: Mi Medication Stability Coalition

Medication Affordability
We are dedicating to ensuring that Michigan's Public Policies work for people with epilepsy.  Epilepsy medications must be accessible and affordable for all patients.  People should not have to choose between thier medications and basic needs.  We are helping to lead a coalition that focuses on this issue and how better policies can be created to address this issue.

Please visit our site that focuses on this issue and consider sharing your story: Michigan Coalition for Affordable Prescriptions

These are just some of the issues that we are actively working on.  For questions or concerns, please contact our President, Brianna Romines.