To help Californians receive the highest level of care regardless of where they live, epilepsy experts have established the USC Epilepsy Care Consortium, a unique partnership of six independent comprehensive epilepsy centers serving patients in Los Angeles County, Orange County and the Central Valley. Keck Medicine of USC serves as the academic medical center and anchor of the consortium.
Charles Liu, MD, PhD, and Christianne Heck, MD, who serve respectively as surgical and medical director for the USC Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, sought to collaborate with other institutions after noticing that patients often drove for hours to seek services at the Center because their local hospitals did not offer epilepsy care.
“Many patients were burdened with long travel times, and we were concerned that those without the means to travel were not getting treatment,” says Heck, professor of clinical neurology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. “We realized we needed to join forces with other hospitals to help build additional epilepsy programs and provide them with access to ours.”
The two physicians, who also direct and co-direct the USC Neurorestoration Center, along with support from fellow USC Neurorestoration Center doctors, created a network of collaborating epilepsy centers spanning a variety of medical settings: public and private, adult and pediatric, urban and rural.