NEW YORK and MIAMI, Sept. 18, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The Parkinson's Foundation announced today that its toll-free Helpline, 1-800-4PD-INFO, will extend its hours, answering calls in English and Spanish, to help make life better for people with Parkinson's disease (PD) and their families. The Helpline, staffed by trained Parkinson's information specialists from various health professions, will respond to callers from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET Monday through Friday.
"With one million Americans living with Parkinson's disease and growing, we are making our Helpline more available to the PD community by extending Helpline hours and providing support to English and Spanish speaking communities," said John L. Lehr, president and chief executive officer of the Parkinson's Foundation. "Our Helpline connects us to people with Parkinson's, caregivers, family members and healthcare professionals and allows us to provide answers to the most difficult Parkinson's questions, while offering emotional support and individualized attention."
The Parkinson's Foundation Helpline provides current disease information; medical issues including symptoms and treatments; health and social care; emotional support; and referrals to local health professionals.
"After speaking with the Helpline I was able to ensure that my father was getting expert care," said Gary, Helpline caller. "It's nice to have a compass like the Parkinson's Foundation that can help guide you through the waters."
Helpline specialists can also inform callers about the wellness and exercise classes offered in their area and guide them through resources that explain vital Parkinson's symptoms and topics — from cognitive changes and medications to caregiving. The Helpline can also mail callers the Foundation's free "Aware in Care" hospitalization kit, which prepares people with Parkinson's for a planned or unplanned hospital stay.
"Answering Parkinson's questions is only part of what we do. We truly care about the people we serve and their families," said Adolfo Diaz, Parkinson's Foundation senior director of patient services, who manages the Helpline. "Whether you just received a diagnosis, need a referral to expert care or are caring for a family member, we are here to help you understand your condition, your care and the latest research on how you can live a better life with Parkinson's."
The Parkinson's Foundation Helpline answers approximately 20,000 calls annually.
The Parkinson's Foundation Helpline is made possible through the support of generous donors. The Helpline can also be reached at Helpline@parkinson.org.
About the Parkinson's Foundation
The Parkinson's Foundation makes life better for people with Parkinson's disease by improving care and advancing research toward a cure. In everything we do, we build on the energy, experience and passion of our global Parkinson's community. For more information, visit www.parkinson.org or call (800) 4PD-INFO (473-4636).
About Parkinson's Disease
Affecting nearly one million Americans and 10 million worldwide, Parkinson's disease is the second-most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer's and is the 14th-leading cause of death in the United States. It is associated with a progressive loss of motor control (e.g., shaking or tremor at rest and lack of facial expression), as well as non-motor symptoms (e.g., depression and anxiety). There is no cure for Parkinson's and 60,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States alone.
Editor's Note: Interviews available upon request.
SOURCE Parkinson's Foundation