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Epilepsy: legal discrimination from negative to positive.

Indian law equates epilepsy with temporary insanity and also prohibits a legally valid marriage for a person with epilepsy with inherent risk of divorce. This absurd law, unique to India and possibly Brazil, must be excised in toto. Repeated petitions, by the Indian Epilepsy Association, to the Federal Government, have resulted in only vague assurances and alternate methods are under consideration. There are no legal impediments to education or work. Strict regulations against driving have yielded place to lax rules wherein a person can drive a vehicle, even after a recent fit, provided he gets a certificate from any registered medical practitioner. The nascent medical insurance specifically excludes epilepsy from its ambit. The cost of anti-epileptic drugs includes a 40% tax akin to Value Added Tax in the West. We must consider the impact of these legal impediments on the social fabric of the individual in his/her milieu and vis-a-vis priorities in national development.[1]

References

  1. Epilepsy: legal discrimination from negative to positive. Mani, K.S. Medicine and law. (1997) [Pubmed]
 
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