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Locals support Parkinson’s Awareness Week

24 Apr 2015 14:11:31
Parkinson's Awareness Week

A group of patients affected by Parkinson’s Disease as well as their families, carers supporters and specialists have shown support for Parkinson’s Disease this week (20 – 26 April), though events at Rotherham Hospital, part of The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust.

Alongside the Trust’s dedicated Lead Parkinson’s Nurse, Joanne Rose, who is based at the hospital, the Rotherham branch of Parkinson’s UK has been out in force informing those in the area of the help available.

Joanne said: “We support hundreds of people locally who have Parkinson’s but whose conditions vary greatly; from hand tremors to great difficulty in moving or speaking.

“There is lots we do to support those living with Parkinson’s as well as, their families and carers such as giving advice on medication and providing information about coping day to day and on how to live a full and active life. We sign post patients to other members of the Multi-disciplinary team, to physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, and to the information support worker who is funded by Parkinson’s UK.”
The theme of Parkinson’s Awareness Week this year is ‘up your friendly’ which encourages others to be patient and consider some of the obstacles someone with Parkinson’s may face, such as struggling to open doors or slurred speech.

Rotherham’s Mayor, Councillor John Foden, who made a pledge to ‘up his friendly’ by taking more time to listen, commented: “Unless you or a loved one is affected directly by an illness or condition you never quite know how much support is out there and today I have learnt that there is wealth of help out there for those with Parkinson’s.

“It’s great to see such a fantastic turn out of supporters here at the hospital and all credit is due to these people who volunteer to fundraise and raise awareness of the assistance available for those living with the disease: They’re doing a great job!”

Keith Duke, who has Parkinson’s and is an active member of the Rotherham branch of Parkinson’s UK, said: “When I was first diagnosed in 2007 I was shocked. It started just with hand tremors and I was worried about what was going to happen.

“I was put at ease as soon as I saw a specialist. You get all the support you need through Joanne and her team at the hospital and having her at the end of the phone gives me confidence. I do have bad days but through the support of our local group I can get out and about and enjoy things.”

Joanne added: “Keith is testament to the fact that there is life after a diagnosis of Parkinson’s and I’d strongly recommend anyone with concerns or symptoms to see their GP.”

Parkinson’s can affect people of all ages, doesn’t run in families and as well as difficulty with moving around, symptoms can include tiredness, pain, depression, anxiety and memory problems.

The Rotherham branch of Parkinson’s UK can be contacted through Michael Speight on
01709 540709 or hesling25@gmail.com or more information is available at: www.parkinsons.org.uk.

A Community Health Meeting on the Management of Parkinson’s will be hosted by the Trust on Friday 29 May from 12.30 – 2.30pm in Rotherham’s Wentworth North constituency. More information will be posted on the Trust’s website: http://www.therotherhamft.nhs.uk/. For any further information contact Rebecca Ferguson, Membership Officer at The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust on 01709 427800.
For more information about the work of The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust, please visit: http://www.therotherhamft.nhs.uk/ You can also join the 2,970 followers we have on Twitter @RotherhamNHS_FT or ‘like us’ on Facebook www.facebook.com/TheRotherhamNHSFoundationTrust.  


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