Parkinson’s Foundation Expanding Care Network for Parkinson’s Care
Community Partners in Parkinson's Care will help senior living communities, home care agencies improve patient care
The Parkinson’s Foundation is expanding its Global Care Network with a membership program — called Community Partners in Parkinson’s Care — to better equip senior living communities and home care agencies to care for people with Parkinson’s disease.
The foundation’s Global Care Network is made up of Parkinson’s Foundation Centers of Excellence as well as Comprehensive Care Centers that, combined, serve more than 260,000 patients.
“As the disease advances, many people with PD [Parkinson’s disease] seek home care services or senior living communities, but many of these organizations and their staff have limited knowledge about PD and best care practices,” said Eli Pollard, the foundation’s vice president chief education and training officer, in a press release.
Using education and other tools and resources, the new program “trains staff to provide the best Parkinson’s care,” Pollard said.
The new program offers a comprehensive curriculum of Parkinson’s education via remote and in-person training. Using a train-the-trainer approach, it develops “site champions” who then provide the tools and resources to educate at least 70% of an organization’s staffers.
Program members must provide care in a care community or home care setting and designate at least two site champions for training to educate staff. Within the first six months of being a member, 70% of staffers must be trained in Parkinson’s care and that level that must be maintained.
Members, which must pay an annual fee of $2,500, should also allow and encourage Parkinson’s patients in their care to complete two yearly evaluations, to be provided by the foundation.
Previously known as the Struthers Parkinson’s Care Network, and part of the Struthers Parkinson’s Center in Minnesota — a Parkinson’s Foundation Center of Excellence — the program includes more than 100 member sites throughout North America.
“The Community Partners in Parkinson’s Care membership program is comprised of senior living communities and home care agencies that have committed to improving care and providing support to people living with PD and their families,” said Joan Gardner, a registered nurse and the co-director of the national program alongside Rose Wichmann, a physical therapist. “We are proud to include members of individual organizations as well as full corporate networks who are trained to prepare, empower, and motivate staff with ongoing support from PD experts.”
More information about the membership program can be had by emailing [email protected]
Parkinson’s is thought to affect 1 million U.S. residents and 10 million people globally. Because it’s a progressive disease, symptoms such as those related to coordination and movement begin gradually and worsen over time.