Champions for Holistic Epilepsy Care: Dr. Florez and You!

December 18, 2023

Dr. Florez is a Colombian doctor trained in neurology at the University of Toronto. He began his medical journey driven by a desire to make a meaningful impact on people’s lives, leading him to a specialization in epilepsy research and practice.

Now he treats patients in Durham Region through the Oshawa Clinic. His commitment extends to community practice, aiming to optimize patient care and education, thereby reducing socioeconomic and mental health harms caused by delays in accessing epilepsy expertise.

Dr. Florez’s collaborative efforts have resulted in the growth of a group of 15 doctors dedicated to a community epileptology practice in the GTA, showcasing a distinctive and impactful initiative in the field.

Dr. Florez enjoys witnessing the positive transformations of patients under his care, particularly when patients share their achievements after overcoming epilepsy-related challenges. “When I tell them ‘well, from now on, I’m only going to follow up with you once a year’…and seeing them succeed in life at the same time that they have been diagnosed with epilepsy brings me a lot of joy.”

He finds fulfillment in the impact made on patients’ lives, observing them earn degrees, pursue careers, build relationships, and start families, demonstrating the immeasurable positive influence of epilepsy management. He also takes pride in challenging traditional norms by proving the effectiveness of community-based epileptology, gaining recognition for his pioneering efforts even within academic circles. Dr. Florez’s commitment to reducing the gap in patient care and advocating for swift referrals reflects a dedication to creating a more efficient and impactful system for epilepsy patients.

Dr. Florez emphasizes the benefits of patients getting involved in community epilepsy organizations, like Epilepsy Durham Region, highlighting the medical and mental health advantages. He notes that patient involvement in our community becomes particularly important when they face challenges such as accessing social programs, accommodations at work or school, or coping with the acceptance of their diagnosis. He insists:

“The medical difference is that involvement with an epilepsy community organization helps to reinforce a patient’s self-management strategies. This set of strategies make a difference in addressing epilepsy and seizure disorders. It’s probably half the key to the success of getting control of the disease. The other half is having a doctor like myself choose the right medication. Let’s say, you don’t have access to work accommodations. You don’t have a support group. You don’t have someone that you can talk to about the diagnosis and you are struggling with depression and anxiety (which is a comorbidity of epilepsy). All those things are detrimental to self-management strategies. So I tell them, for your management, it is important to connect with an organization like Epilepsy Durham Region to help you to actually live out your self-management strategies. That’s where the benefits of community care can be directly linked.”

He recognizes the direct link between patient care and community involvement, highlighting Epilepsy Durham Region’s role in strengthening the coping mechanisms and strategies that contribute significantly to epilepsy management.

Providing holistic support that reinforces successful outcomes for individuals managing epilepsy doesn’t happen without you in our corner. We’re thankful that you’re a part of our team. Together, we can see even more lives changed in 2024.

Will you continue your support and help our clients receive the community care they need to successfully manage their epilepsy diagnosis? 

We have a $15,000 goal to meet before 2023 comes to a close. Click the button above to send a special year-end gift and join us in serving individuals and families impacted by epilepsy now and into the new year. 

Did you know that a gift of $100 can provide a family with resources and access to our Clinic to Community program?