By Dr Ananya Mandal, MD
Good Parkinson’s disease care
The Department of Health in the United Kingdom developed a National Service Framework (NSF) for the management and handling of long term nerve related disorders like Parkinson’s disease. The NSF allows health and social care professionals to plan and deliver services that are quicker and easier to access and use, matched to the needs of the population, co-ordinated among specialist doctors to ease health care availability and planned according to the needs of the patients and their carers. The main aim is to help people with long term nerve degenerative disorders to live more independently.
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) also has clinical published guidelines for care of Parkinson’s patients. The guideline provides comprehensive evidence-based information on diagnosing, treating and caring for people with Parkinson’s disease. The guidelines provide a protocol for regularly check for medication use and make changes in doses and drugs when needed, to support family and carers looking after chronic disabled patients and provides information about Parkinson’s disease, its symptoms and treatments, newer developments and uses.
It was in 1957 when William Black, President of Chock full O' Nuts coffee company started the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF). He began the foundation after one of his company's employees was diagnosed with Parkinson's. He started with a $250,000 grant to support Parkinson's Research.
At first the organization spread its activities throughout the U.S., and merged with the United Parkinson Foundation in 1999. Since it was founded in 1957, PDF has provided more than $80 million to research. The foundation is involved in clinical trials, collaborative initiative of Parkinson’s organizations called PD trials to increasing education and awareness about clinical research.
Another more recent organization founded in 2000 is the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research. Michael J. Fox was a famous and much loved TV presenter and actor who developed the condition at a young age. His book ''Lucky Man'' (2000), focused on his experiences with the disease and his career and family problems.
Davis Phinney, a notable figure in the cycling world also developed a foundation that supports Parkinson's research. Phinney is a past competitor in the Olympics, Pan-Am Games and has competed as a pro-cyclist for nearly twenty years. The Davis Phinney Foundation works to improve the sufferers of Parkinson’s disease.
Reviewed by April Cashin-Garbutt, BA Hons (Cantab)