Meet the AEP team: Amanda Anderson

February 5, 2024
AEP team member

What is your role at the AEP? Can you explain what it involves.  

I am the Lived Experience Ambassador and Participant Lead. I use my lived experience of epilepsy to guide a lot of what we do at the AEP to make sure it’s participant friendly. I obtain feedback from participants and adjust our processes, where needed. I track our metrics to ensure we are meeting our goals. I have also recently started conducting neuropsychological testing with our participants.


Why did you choose to work at the AEP?  

After having successful surgery in 2010 for my refractory epilepsy at the Austin, I wanted to give back to the epilepsy community.


What do you hope to achieve at the AEP?  

Give people living with epilepsy access to advanced testing and shorten their journey to seizure freedom.


Proudest moment/achievement. Why did this make you feel so proud?

Four years after epilepsy surgery I went back to study but chose to start a Psychology degree instead of finishing my accounting studies. I chose this degree in the hope of getting into a field where I could help people like me, living with epilepsy. Prior to surgery, I had dropped out of my accounting studies at Monash University as my memory was becoming an issue whilst also experiencing many seizures. I never thought I would be able to go back to university, so that is why I’m so proud of this achievement.


All-time favourite meal?  

Mexican. I love a bit of spice and cheese.


Current streaming recommendation?

Boy Swallows Universe on Netflix. I loved the book by Brisbane author, Trent Dalton and the series was fantastic, too.


Current book you are reading?

I’m reading Trent Dalton’s new book, Lola in the Mirror - another great read of his.


What advice would you give your 12-year-old self?

This is a hard one. Would I let myself know about all the struggles I would go through with my health? I probably would say, ‘things will get tough, but you will get through anything thrown at you and will come out stronger.’


Who would you most like to meet, or have met? And why?

I love a good laugh and thoroughly enjoy Ricky Gervais’ work, especially the series, Afterlife. So, I would love to meet him. [Ricky Gervais - Wikipedia]


Finish the following sentences:

My ideal weekend involves…

Hanging out with my family, catching up with friends and a sleep-in. My kids are now 10 and 16, so I can enjoy sleep-ins after many years of early mornings.


I believe the most important thing in life is…

being happy and healthy.


AEP Research Assistant publishes first paper as lead-author

AEP Research Assistant, Remy Pugh, recently had her first paper as lead-author published in Epilepsia Open. The study explores the cognitive and psychological functioning in adults after their first seizure, but prior to an epilepsy diagnosis or treatment plan. A great achievement, congratulations to all involved.

First AEP Health Economics paper published

The Australian Epilepsy Project’s first health economics paper based on our pilot study data has been recently published. Congratulations to all involved, including Dr Clara Marquina, Emma Foster and the AEP’s Health Economics Lead, Prof. Zanfina Ademi of Monash Uni Pharmaceutical Sciences.

AEP Participant: Chloe Falzon

Chloe was only recently diagnosed with epilepsy after experiencing seizures over an 18 month period. Her initial seizures occurred during sleep and saw Chloe hospitalised a number of times. The results of her scans were inconclusive but additional seizures over the ensuing 12 months lead to her epilepsy diagnosis.