The Parkinson’s Foundation announces a new educational series that aims to improve health outcomes for people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) by expanding equitable access to healthcare professionals delivering culturally competent, high-quality care. The Parkinson’s Foundation Education Series for Community Providers is a six-part series of accredited, asynchronous, free online education courses offering vital PD information for care teams serving communities that are medically underserved.

Although more than one million people in the U.S. are living with PD – with an additional 60,000 newly diagnosed annually – there are roughly only 600 movement disorder specialists (MDS), who are neurologists with specialized movement disorders training. It can be incredibly challenging for people with PD to gain access to an MDS in their local area, and many do not have access to specialized care at all. The Foundation aims to address these gaps in care through the Education Series for Community Providers.

“We have found that many healthcare academic curriculums seldom cover Parkinson’s, and generally, those that do only do so briefly,” said Eli Pollard, chief training and education officer for the Parkinson’s Foundation. “The number of individuals with Parkinson’s is rapidly rising, and all healthcare workers will be treating an increased number of people with PD. These courses are designed to address the urgent need of educating care professionals across disciplines on how to best help their patients.”

The series highlights a lineup of specially curated courses to meet the educational needs of professionals, including neurologists, primary care physicians, nurses, social workers, psychologists, dentists, community health workers and more, on the topic of optimal PD care. The courses include:

1.    Comprehensive and Equitable Care for People with Parkinson’s by Community Providers (2022)
2.    Optimizing Hospital Care for People with Parkinson’s (2023)
3.    Utilizing Quality Measures to Improve Parkinson’s Care: What Every Neurologist Needs to Know (2023)
4.    The Expert Care Experience: The Role of Nurses in Caring for People with Parkinson’s (2023)
5.    The Expert Care Experience: The Role of Social Workers in Caring for People with Parkinson’s (2023)
6.    The Expert Care Experience: The Role of Dentists in Caring for People with Parkinson’s (2023)

For more information on, or to register for, the Education Series for Community Providers, visit Parkinson’s Foundation.

[Source(s): Parkinson’s Foundation, PR Newswire]