According to a Singapore
Epilepsy Foundation (SEF) survey, 36 per cent of people with epilepsy
in Singapore are unemployed and almost 50 per cent earn less than $500
There are more than
20,000 people with epilepsy in Singapore, according to SEF, who conducted
their study between 2001 and 2003.
Dr Lim Shih Hui,
a senior consultant neurologist at the National
have comparable educational levels with the Singapore population, but
they have a higher rate of unemployment or under-employment compared
to the general populace. This is probably due to job discrimination,
with Singaporean employers unwilling to employ them because of their
An SEF survey amongst
the population of Singapore in 1999 showed that prejudice against people
with epilepsy is widespread - about 20 per cent of Singaporeans believe
that epilepsy is a mental illness, insanity or possession by an evil
spirit and only 38 per cent of the employers surveyed were willing
to hire a person with epilepsy.
Dr Lim added that
it was important to people to know that epilepsy is a neurological
disorder, not a mental illness.