American Parkinson Disease Association Provides Initial Funding to Launch the Parkinson Association of Alabama Resource Center

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Resource Center Will Serve as a One-stop Shop for People with Parkinson’s and Their Families

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L-R; Mary T. Miller, PAA Executive Director; Ken Cater, PAA Past President; Jamie Laney, PAA President

“Through an innovative program like the PAA Resource Center, many of these barriers can be eliminated and we can build a sustainable model to implement in other places in the country where APDA supports those impacted by PD." Robin Kornhaber, APDA, Vice President of Programs and Services.

The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) is pleased to announce its support of The Parkinson Association of Alabama, Inc. (PAA) to develop a personalized, comprehensive and centralized Resource Center. The goal of the PAA Resource Center is to educate and fill information gaps when a person is newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD.)

While there are many PD resources available in Alabama, often those resources are spread across multiple organizations and locations making it challenging to navigate. Information provided by healthcare professionals might be limited, especially in more rural areas of the state leaving people with PD and their families with many questions. The need for customized access to education and to identify resources throughout Alabama is a critical component of this effort. The Resource Center will launch as an online hub to serve the widest audience possible and will grow to include a physical location to provide special in-person services to the local PD community.

“APDA wants to reach all the Parkinson’s patients who have difficulty accessing quality PD care because they live too far from a center, English is not their first language, or they are unaware that specialty care for this disease exists,” states Robin Kornhaber, APDA, Vice President of Programs and Services. “Through an innovative program like the PAA Resource Center, many of these barriers can be eliminated and we can build a sustainable model to implement in other places in the country where APDA supports those impacted by PD.

APDA is funding the initial startup costs for the PAA Resource Center with a grant of $40,000 over the next year. The Centers’ launch date is January 2018 and on Thursday, September 21, PAA kicked off its long-term fundraising campaign to fund the PAA Resource Center with a donor appreciation reception on at the law firm of Burr & Forman in Birmingham, Alabama.

PAA Executive Director, Mary T. Miller said, “Without the initial grant from APDA, we would not be able to get the PAA Resource Center off the ground – we’re grateful for their partnership. Next we will be seeking significant funding to further develop and maintain the PAA Resource Center and hire a Care Navigator position for the next two years. The amount needed to fund the center and the position will exceed $250,000 for the first several years.”

The PAA Care Resource Center Navigator will be tasked with canvassing the state to educate neurologists, movement disorder specialists and other health care providers about PAA Resource Center and it services.

Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder affecting more than one million people in the United States. Approximately 60,000 people are newly diagnosed each year. Onset commonly occurs after the age of 60, however up to ten percent will receive a diagnosis before the age of 50. Parkinson’s is characterized by motor problems including slowness of movement, rigidity, and tremor with balance and gait problems sometimes occurring later in the course of illness. A number of non-motor symptoms are associated with Parkinson’s, including fatigue, anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbance. It is important to understand that symptoms vary from person to person.

To learn more about the PAA Resource Center contact Mary T. Miller, PAA Executive Director at 205-871-9941 or visit http://www.parkinsonalabama.com. To learn more about APDA call toll free 800-223-2732 or visit apda(at)apdaparkinson(dot)org

About The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA)
The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) is the largest grassroots network dedicated to fighting Parkinson’s disease (PD) and works tirelessly to assist the more than 1 million Americans with PD live life to the fullest in the face of this chronic, neurological disorder. Founded in 1961, APDA has raised and invested more than $170 million to provide outstanding patient services and educational programs, elevate public awareness about the disease, and support research designed to unlock the mysteries of PD and ultimately put an end to this disease. To join us in the fight against Parkinson’s disease and to learn more about the support APDA provides nationally through our network of Chapters and Information & Referral (I&R) Centers, as well as our national Research Program and Centers for Advanced Research, please visit us at http://www.apdaparkinson.org

About The Parkinson Association of Alabama (PAA)
Founded in 1978, PAA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization committed to a singular mission: To improve the quality of life for patients, caregivers, and families affected by Parkinson’s Disease in the State of Alabama. We do this in a variety of ways that include: providing support, distributing information, increasing awareness, amplifying local programs, encouraging collaboration, and supporting local research to lead to new and improved treatments for Parkinson’s disease that will ultimately lead to a cure.

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