Parkinson’s Awareness Week kicks off ahead of the Parkinson’s annual conference Otesanya David April 3, 2022

Parkinson’s Awareness Week kicks off ahead of the Parkinson’s annual conference

Parkinson’s Awareness Week kicks off ahead of the Parkinson’s annual conference


Thousands of people live with Parkinson’s Disease throughout Ireland

Parkinson’s Awareness Week kicks off today ahead of the annual Parkinson’s Association of Ireland’s annual conference on April 9, followed World Parkinson’s Awareness Day on April 11.

The Parkinson’s Association of Ireland will host its conference virtually this year. There is no cure for Parkinson’s Disease, so the event is an opportunity to raise awareness and to provide support for people living with the disease, ensuring they live better for longer, organisers say.

The conference will be chaired by Kate O’Connell (Pharmacist and former TD), and the guest speaker is renowned neurologist Professor Richard Walsh.

There are thousands of people living with Parkinson’s Disease throughout Ireland and they have been experiencing mental health challenges and loss of health services since the Covid-19 pandemic began more than two years ago.

Commenting in advance of the busy week, Paula Gilmore, Chief Executive Officer of the PAI said: “Calls to our helpline have doubled, although services are gradually reopening with face-to-face meetings. Many of our members are too nervous and fearful to attend classes and medical appointments. Many people with Parkinson’s have physically dis-improved and are falling more as a result of not attending exercise classes or physiotherapy.

We have developed a comprehensive online programme to support the growing membership and we are getting very positive feedback. However, some cannot participate because of limited IT skills. Parkinson’s Association of Ireland is here to help and we would encourage anyone who has been diagnosed or know someone who has been diagnosed to connect with us so that we can offer a listening ear and support you.”

During Parkinson’s Awareness Week from 4-11 April 2022, the Association will reach out to its members – providing on-line classes and information sessions such as chair yoga, seated exercise, singing, Parkinson’s nursing clinics and strategies for dealing with low mood, as well as providing up-to-date information on a wide range of relevant topics.

The Parkinson’s conference on April 9 place between 2pm to 5.30pm. Professor Richard Walsh will talk about new advances in the management of Parkinson’s Disease and the role of deep brain stimulation. Emma O’Shea, School of Medicine, UCC, will present initial findings from her Parkinson’s Disease mapping project.


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