A Feature with the Parkinson’s Association of Ireland on August 19, 2023 by George Ackerman, Ph.D, J.D.
The Parkinson’s Association of Ireland is a charity, based in Dublin with branches throughout the country. Our aim is to assist people with Parkinson’s, their families and carers, health professionals and other interested people by offering support, a listening ear and information on any aspect of living with Parkinson’s. We currently receive no funding from the Irish state.
PAI is made up of eighteen Branches throughout Ireland, in addition to a Central Office based in Dublin.
Please tell me a little about the Parkinson’s Association of Ireland.
- help and support patients and carers by developing a support network of branches throughout the country
- make information freely available to patients and their families through seminars, magazines, information leaflets and meetings on a national and local level
- facilitate easy access to all appropriate services for people with Parkinson’s and to lobby to improve those services
- help establish a network of Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Specialists within a multidisciplinary setting, each in association with a neurologist and or a geriatrician.
- promote and encourage research into Parkinson’s.
- support through our Freephone Helpline, 1800 359359, which is open from 9am to 7pm Monday to Thursday and 9am – 5pm Friday..
- provide Information and advice from our Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Specialist available through our freephone helpline.
- raise awareness through educating the public, health professionals and influencers, to give a greater understanding and acceptance of Parkinson’s.
Can you tell me more about your organization?
- to help and support patients and carers by developing a support network of branches throughout the country
- to make information available to patients and their families through seminars, newsletters and branch meetings on both a national and local level
- to facilitate easy access to all appropriate services for people with Parkinson’s and to lobby to improve those services
- to help establish a network of PDNS, within a multidisciplinary setting, each in association with a neurologist and or a geriatrician.
- to promote and encourage research into Parkinson’s.
What type of goals do individuals with Parkinson’s have when working with you?
We do this through educating the public and raising awareness of – and therefore hopefully – a greater understanding of and acceptance of – Parkinson’s. We fundraise to help provide essential services, ultimately, throughout the country. Currently our primary push is to finance the provision of Parkinson’s Nurse Specialists, ideally working in association with neurologists or geriatricians, and again ideally half based within a hospital environment and half based in the community. That way, the patients have the best of both worlds. Having said that, two of the present three PDNS here are hospital based, and transforming the lives of their patients.
What would you like to see as a future goal for your programs?
We have started work on a series of Information Leaflets on various aspects of Parkinson’s such as the medication, symptoms, FAQs, preventing falls, tricks to stay moving, exercises, caring for someone with Parkinson’s, and more.
What events do you participate in?
We attempt to lobby for greater facilities, such as access to physiotherapy and speech therapy, which can transform lives by maximizing function, but which is not always available. We are aware that governments have budgets, but we feel that those with a neurological disorder are badly served, both with access to specialized care – essential with advancing progression of the condition – and the more modern treatment options, as well as the rehabilitative services.
- We therefore take every opportunity to lobby for improved services – more neurologists, more nurse specialists, more access to proven ancillary services.
- We also aim to inform patients and their families about our work and about Parkinson’s, and raise awareness of Parkinson’s.
- We are running a series of Patient Information Updates throughout the country, at which the people attending will hear about the latest treatments, about the medications, and will have the opportunity to ask questions. These have been hugely successful so far, and are ongoing.
- A quarterly newsletter provides up to date news on the research front, tips, local news, what is happening within the Association, and is a bright and colorful and, we hope, welcome when it drops through the letterbox!
How can someone get in touch? What is your website?
Additional service, support, and awareness for Parkinson’s disease
WHAT WE DO
Our aim is to assist people with Parkinson’s, their families, carers & health professionals by offering support, a listening ear and information on living with Parkinson’s.
We have 17 local branches around the country. Why not meet up with your local branch for face-to-face help and support?
If you have just been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease you will probably feel anxious about the future and have many questions.
Our Frequently Asked Questions page is a central hub where people with Parkinson’s, their families, carers & health professionals can always go with their most common questions.
Join the Parkinson’s community online with our many and varied Online Activities
Available Support Services include Patient Information Videos, Local and Regional Services, Nurse Helpline, and our quarterly magazine.
Parkinson’s Association of Ireland (2023). What we do. Retrieved from https://www.parkinsons.ie/