April is Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month and the American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) Massachusetts Chapter and Information and Referral Center is hard at work to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease (PD), deliver vital programs and services in the community, and help local residents get involved and support a cause that is important to them. In Massachusetts alone, more than 17,000 people over the age of 60 are diagnosed and living with PD.
The APDA Massachusetts Chapter has a full roster of activities planned for the month (and beyond) and many ways for people to get involved. (For the safety of all involved, all events and programs will be held virtually.)
The extensive health concerns and restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic have been challenging for everyone, but for people with PD and their care partners who were already tackling the daily challenges of life with PD, the impact has been significant. Now more than ever, it is critical to support, engage and inform the PD community and raise awareness about this disease, and Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month is a great time to shine a spotlight on this issue.
Over the past year, APDA has created extensive virtual programming to make sure that people living with PD have what they need during this difficult time. From online exercise programs to help keep people moving when they can’t get to their in-person fitness classes, to educational webinars where they can ask PD experts their questions right from their own living rooms, and even virtual group singing and art programs — APDA has been there for them every step of the way.
For the month of April, the APDA MA Chapter Information and Referral Center will be delivering virtual support groups, information sessions and exercise guidance and program.
“Every nine minutes there is a new diagnosis of PD, which means that in April alone nearly 5,000 people in this country will learn they have PD,” states Bill Patjane, Executive Director of APDA’s Massachusetts Chapter. “Here in Massachusets we are the boots on the ground – we are in the communities, providing the support, education, programs, and services people need to live their best lives. We’ve been able to maintain this support despite the pandemic thanks to virtual opportunities, and we look forward to seeing our PD community in person as soon as it is safe to do so.”
The support of the general public is crucial, and April is the perfect time to take action that can help the more than one million people in the United States coping with this chronic neurological movement disorder, and also fund research that will lead us to better treatments and ultimately, a cure. Visit www.apdaparkinson.org to learn more.
For more information about APDA programs, services and support in Massachusetts, contact the APDA MA Chapter and Information & Referral Centerat 617-638-8466 or [email protected], located at 72 East Concord St., Room C3, Boston, MA 02118.