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The Medtronic Foundation Awards Fourth Grant to the National Parkinson Foundation's National Parkinson Care Network Program

MIAMI, April 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) has been awarded its fourth grant from the Medtronic Foundation Patient Link program to address health disparities in Parkinson's disease (PD). Medtronic Foundation funding for the National Parkinson Care Network (NPCN), a national outreach program of NPF, totals approximately $1 million.

Since its inception, NPCN has reached over 3 million consumers with information about the signs of Parkinson's disease and available community resources, educated more than 5,000 health care workers and offered expert opinion on Parkinson's topics through media venues.

Through NPCN, NPF Centers across the nation have been trained in effective strategies for cultural competence, outreach and building community partnerships with diverse, urban and rural, medically underserved communities.

"NPF is proud of our longstanding partnership with Medtronic and our joint commitment to reaching underserved communities," said Joyce Oberdorf, NPF President and CEO. "The strategies developed through this partnership have served as national models, as we continue to explore new ways to leverage community networks to reach Parkinson's patients, their families, and the health care professionals who treat them."

The NPCN initiative focuses on:

  1. Building partnerships with national organizations which have extensive community-based networks providing services to medically underserved groups.
  2. Training front-line providers to ensure that all persons living with PD receive the best care possible and empowerment resources at their local points of service.
  3. Developing consumer empowerment materials to help families affected by PD to access informed PD care.
  4. Training NPCN regional representatives in key topics around forming partnerships and outreach work through webinars and other training opportunities.
  5. Conducting Leadership Dialogues with administrators and program directors to raise awareness to the complexity of Parkinson's care and the need for more responsive and integrated systems of care and support.

NPF is working with the National Area Health Education Center Organization (NAO-AHEC) and the National Alliance for Hispanic Health and community health center networks, each of which serves millions of individuals and families in diverse, rural and medically underserved communities. NPF provides free brochures ("What You Should Know About Parkinson Disease") in seven different languages: English, Spanish, Polish, Russian, Chinese, Creole and Korean.

About the National Parkinson Foundation

Since 1982, NPF has funded more than $140 million in care, research, outreach and support services for its Centers network, addressing unmet needs at all stages of Parkinson's disease. In FY 2009, NPF funded a total of nearly $9 million in programs dedicated to Parkinson's disease.

Founded in 1957, the National Parkinson Foundation's mission is to improve the quality of Parkinson's care and develop exemplary care for this generation of Parkinson's patients through research, education, and outreach.

For more information about the National Parkinson Care Network or the National Parkinson Foundation, please visit or call 800-327-4545.

SOURCE National Parkinson Foundation
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