An OAE alliance was created during the 1st International Workshop on Onchocerciasis-Associated Epilepsy in October 2017 (OAE 2017). The aim of the alliance is:
- to create international awareness about the public health importance of OAE;
- to disseminate information about OAE among alliance members;
- to stimulate collaborative research projects about OAE;
- to develop guidelines on how to prevent OAE and how to improve the quality of life of persons with OAE and their families;
- to obtain funding to organise treatment and care for persons with epilepsy in onchocerciasis endemic countries.
To reach these goals we want to establish partnerships between researchers, WHO, affected communities, advocacy groups, ministries of health, non-governmental organisations, the pharmaceutical industry and funding organisations. By joining forces and expertise we hope to prevent children from developing OAE and to considerably improve patients’ quality of life.
The chairperson of the OAE alliance is Adrian Hopkins. The secretariat of the OAE alliance is based at the Global Health Institute of the University of Antwerp.