Parkinson’s Foundation Expanding Its Global Care Network for Patients

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by Mary Chapman |

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To expand access to quality care, the Parkinson’s Foundation is expanding to 60 the Centers of Excellence within its Global Care Network for Parkinson’s disease, and adding a new level of recognized excellence, called Comprehensive Care Centers.

A total of 15 medical centers found to be providing “outstanding” and specialized clinical care and resources to patients will be designated Comprehensive Care Centers over the next five years. Over those same years, the organization’s Global Care Network will add 13 Centers of Excellence to its current 47 centers, including 33 in the United States.

Six of these newly designated centers will be in the U.S., the foundation stated in a press release.

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Each Center of Excellence is an academic medical institution, selected for both its high-quality comprehensive care and clinical research, including its role in new treatment development. Its specialized teams include neurologists, movement disorder specialists, physical and occupational therapists, and mental health professionals.

Recognized centers also must be recertified every five years to ensure that they meet the required standards of care, scientific work and outreach, which includes professional training and community education and services.

“The Parkinson’s Foundation recognizes there are many providers offering exceptional care and services to people living with and affected by Parkinson’s disease,” said John L. Lehr, president and CEO, the Parkinson’s Foundation. “Today’s announcement marks the planned expansion of our Global Care Network and our need to designate centers at all levels providing the very best care.”

Ongoing research is the chief difference between a Center of Excellence and a Comprehensive Care Center. Centers of Excellence must be engaged in research and clinical trials relevant to Parkinson’s; Comprehensive Care Centers need to meet all other requirements outside of research and trials, and will also undergo recertification every five years.

“The Parkinson’s Foundation Global Care Network creates more opportunities for people with PD [Parkinson’s disease] to access high-quality care while also providing health professionals the chance to advance and share their knowledge,” the foundation stated on a webpage.

Applications for both Centers of Excellence and Comprehensive Care Center designations are being accepted through Jan. 18, and open to public and private healthcare facilities. More information is available here.

Priority for Comprehensive Care Centers include those medical centers in areas without a Center of Excellence, and those serving communities with “limited access to to quality care resources” or “bordering” cities and states, the foundation stated in its release.

Centers chosen for these two designations will be announced in the summer. Visit this site to apply.