Merger of New Mexico Parkinson’s Coalition, PMDAlliance Expected to Improve Patient Services

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by Mary Chapman |

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Needed Merger

The recent merger of the New Mexico Parkinson’s Coalition (NMPC) and national nonprofit Parkinson & Movement Disorder Alliance (PMDAlliance) is expected to significantly boost support services for Parkinson’s patients in the New Mexico area, according to the organizations.

“I’m a firm believer in mergers when the organizations share similar missions and are compatible in their purpose and goals,” Sarah Jones, CEO of PMDAlliance, said in a press release. “Bringing everything under one virtual roof creates exponential benefit. It saves money and allows us to serve more people in need.”

As a result, the organizations expect a fourfold increase in the programs offered to patients with Parkinson’s and other movement disorders in New Mexico.

The coalition website states that “the tough decision was made knowing that there would be new, innovative programs and support brought to New Mexico as well as funds to hire a community engagement manager,” adding that more patients will have access to education, exercise programs, and events.

These improvements in services will be expanded to include smaller areas in the state rather than being limited to larger cities such as Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Las Cruces.

“Working collaboratively, we can expand our reach in New Mexico, including extending services to our Native American neighbors and rural communities,” said Karen St. Clair, a former coalition board member. “PMDAlliance is passionate about services, just as the coalition is. By merging we can allocate more resources to service delivery instead of administration.”

Next year, the PMDAlliance will bring to the state educational events such as a support group for leadership training, a retreat for caregivers and their partners, and a program that focuses on new medical treatments.

The NMPC will be folded into the PMDAlliance umbrella, although it will continue to co-brand — using both organizations’ logos — until the transition is complete in about eight months, St. Clair said in a phone interview with Parkinson’s News Today. After that, its website will discontinue. The coalition was formed the year after the American Parkinson’s Disease Association’s decision in 2013 to leave New Mexico.

Operating nationwide but with no brick-and-mortar base, PMDAlliance provides educational workshops for organization leaders and those affected by movement disorders. Its overall mission is to improve patients’ lives.

According to the Parkinson’s Foundation, about 60,000 U.S. residents are diagnosed with Parkinson’s annually.