It is April and that means it is Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month!
Everyday ought to be Parkinson’s Awareness Day! For each and everyone of us who lives with this illness, we know that our awareness is real and constant. Now, bring that awareness to those who you encounter or who are less familiar with this illness. Too often, much to my amazement, I meet people completely unaware of what Parkinson’s is and what it can do. We have got to do a better job of telling the world about this illness, and what it is all about.
I refuse to mix politics and ethics. I try to keep my nose out of politics on this site and provide my readers with a perspective that informs and allows you to make your own decision.
I have seen the life-changing impact that Meals On Wheels has made and continues to make on lives. Just the thought of erasing a program as important as this one, is heartless, cruel, and the sign of a system that is out of touch and totally unfamiliar with real human needs.
To reduce funding for the FDA and the NIH reduces our hopes for a speedy breakthrough or drug development. Our health matters and many of the best minds in research and future developments come from these organizations.
The elimination of the EPA could cause numerous devastating changes and have even more repercussions on climate change and various environmental factors that impact genetically sensitive people. The future of the animal kingdom on this planet is in even greater jeopardy, than it is right now.
Speak up! Let your voice be heard!
It is so important to share your story and how governmental decisions impact you and those you love.
When you live in or very near our nation’s Capital, Washington, DC, American national news becomes your local news. The constant bombardment of fighting and badmouthing gets overwhelming. How do two parties, both made up of flesh and blood, elected to oversee, govern, and protect millions of fellow humans also made up of flesh and blood who are in a position to help so many and capable of making life better for others, so dormant and implacable? Time is of the essence.
Since 1995, almost every year since, I have consistently pleaded with my representatives about increasing the funding for more Parkinson’s disease research for the National Institutes for Health (NIH), implementing telemedicine, expanding better and faster drugs and devices, and made a loud cry for the importance of creating a national data collection system for neurological diseases. There were moments of fleeting successes, scattered over the years, but our current Congress shows little signs of budging, even on issues that could save immediate lives. This is about real people in need.
If the current estimate of 60,000 people are diagnosed with PD every year is nearly accurate, it is probable that many patients are either misdiagnosed or not at all. It took me 6 years and 9 doctors to get my diagnosis. I know many others who faced the same journey to a diagnosis.
No one should be forced to be faced with the decision to either afford groceries or their medications. No one should be homeless with Parkinson’s disease. Something is terribly wrong when it has come to this.
Whether one has an illness or not, for the betterment of the country as a whole and all those seeking progress, compromise must be acted, immediately.
Next Monday, hundreds of the United States’ most dynamic and involved advocates for the rights and issues affecting people with Parkinson’s Disease will convene in our Nation’s capital. The goal is to be heard and represented but mostly to be understood that we, as a collective force need better funding and services.
Neurological disorders are rising as is the aging population. Even more importantly, younger and younger people are receiving neurological related diagnoses that one might find in an older patient. Whether the cause is our growing toxic world and/or a genetic component that gets triggered or some cocktail of switches, a desperate portion of our population seeks a solution to a real problem that plagues them everyday, all-day.
In less than a century our country replaced vacuum tubes for Silica chips, went from the horse-drawn carriage to the space shuttle, put a man on the moon, and mapped the human genome. Where is the push to eradicate or even slow neurological illnesses? Great strides have been made in other diseases. New therapies and drugs, while slow to come, only slow or mask symptoms. It is time for a push and a unification of voices to be heard in DC and across the nation that more must be done.
The PAN advocates are coming to DC to speak for the countless victims, both directly and indirectly, touched or shaken by Parkinson’s Disease. They are speaking for those who are unable to speak for themselves.
To learn more about PAN and to view an online webcast of our symposium, go to www.parkinsonsaction.org.