The first annual Encephalitis Information Week (October 18 to 25) is aimed at healthcare professionals and the general public and helping them to discover more about encephalitis, the latest in research, as well as our resources which may be useful for managing encephalitis and recovery and rehabilitation.

Encephalitis Information Week

Day One: Monday, October 18, 2021.

Who is the Encephalitis Society and what is it that we do?

The Encephalitis Society was founded in 1994 by a group of parents whose children had been affected by the condition. They found that information about encephalitis and support for people affected and their families was virtually non-existent.

In the early days, the information we provided was a simple leaflet while the newsletters were primitive. Support was by telephone with occasional meetings across the UK.

The Encephalitis Society continues to have its headquarters in Malton, North Yorkshire, and has progressed from those humble beginnings to become the foremost global charity providing support, information and awareness for people affected directly or indirectly by inflammation of the brain.

As we approach our 28th birthday, we have 14,374 members globally, including 2,048 healthcare professionals and have become the organisers of campaigns such as World Encephalitis Day, Encephalitis Research Month and, of course, Encephalitis Information Week.

Our work can be broadly separated into three areas:

  1. Support
  2. Information
  3. Awareness


Our award-winning support team provide assistance to people around the world. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020/21, we had 2,450 contacts through our support service - a 25% increase year-on-year.

Anyone who comes through to our support team will be listened, supplied with peer-reviewed resources about encephalitis, depending on their needs, and/or referred to other organisations who offer more tailored help to their enquiry.

Sometimes, the questions may be legal in nature, be it around returning to work or education, workplace discrimination or even clinical negligence. By partnering with legal firms, including Clarke Willmott, Leigh Day and Moore Barlow, we have been able to ensure that our members will be in safe hands with experts who have built up experience of the legal issues surrounding encephalitis.

Around 68% of enquiries to our support team are from the UK and 32% from the rest of the world. Conversely, 75% of visitors to our website are from around the world and 25% from the UK.

Support for our membership takes many forms, from our virtual gatherings, through to an online support forum or our annual events which can be accessed in-person or digitally.

One of our most recent events was the Young Person Residential Weekend, which was kindly supported by the Masonic Charitable Foundation and our Vice President, David Jennings, of UAP Ltd.


The Encephalitis Society is the preeminent organisation globally when it comes to raising awareness about encephalitis. Our signature campaign, World Encephalitis Day, has reached 236 million people since its launch in 2014. Other annual campaigns include Encephalitis Research Month and, of course, Encephalitis Information Week, which is celebrating its inaugural year this October.

These campaigns offer a mix of awareness in the media and on social media, including through our digital channels including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.

READ - Reggie's Story. Four-year-old Reggie was affected by COVID-19 encephalitis in February this year.


The Encephalitis Society works with hand-in-hand world-leading experts in encephalitis to put together peer-reviewed information covering all aspects of encephalitis, from diagnosis, through to rehabilitation and recovery.

We also organise an annual CPD-accredited conference for healthcare professionals which has become the go-to event for anyone interested in encephalitis research. The next edition of the Encephalitis Conference is taking place, virtually and in-person in London, on the 7th December. We also participate with medical institutions on research studies, and help to fund encephalitis research around the world.

Our Scientific Advisory Panel includes some of the pre-eminent names in the world of encephalitis treatment and research, all of whom help to shape our work.

Become a Member

If you would like to keep up-to-date with the latest information from the Encephalitis Society, please become a member. By having you as a member also means that our voice is stronger when it comes to applying for grants and when partnering with the World Health Organization and other agencies on important encephalitis research.

General Membership

Membership for Healthcare Professionals

If you have found this information helpful, please consider making a donation to help us continue our life-saving work in the future.

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