Archive for February, 2012

Message from the Editor

Welcome to the first edition of e-ParkinsonPost for 2012.

In this issue, the advocacy report introduces Joyce Barretto, the new Co-Chair of the National Advocacy Committee and offers a look at several briefs that have been presented recently to federal and provincial government policymakers.

We announce the progress of the Parkinson Research Alliance in developing Canada’s first set of guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson’s.

We provide links to web sites and blogs where people with Parkinson’s can share knowledge, information, ideas and experiences, as well as links to media stories on Parkinson’s research.

This issue also offers some dates to watch for – the deadline for nominations for Parkinson Society Canada’s National Volunteer Awards, a webinar on cognitive impairment in Parkinson’s coming in April, the 2012 Donald Calne Lecture and World Parkinson Congress 2013.

For the April Parkinson’s Awareness Month, watch for stories on the benefits of exercise in Parkinson’s and new physical activity guidelines for staying active.

We want to hear from you. Please leave a note in the Comments section to let us know what you think of the newsletter and articles. Your feedback will make this publication better. And if you really enjoy this publication, please pass along the link to someone you know so that they may enjoy it too.

Marjie Zacks

Advocacy Update

Yvon Trepanier

Yvon Trepanier

By Yvon Trepanier, Co-Chair, National Advocacy Committee

New Co-Chair

Joyce Barretto has been appointed by the board of directors to co-chair the National Advocacy Committee. Joyce is a strategic leader with over twenty-five years of success in the private, public and nonprofit sectors.

Joyce Barretto

Joyce Barretto

Her 13-year career in the Ontario Public Service included positions in the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and as Assistant Deputy Minister in the former Ministry of Public Infrastructure & Renewal, overseeing four large provincial agencies. Joyce is past president of the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto and is currently a director on the board of Evergreen, an environmental non-profit agency. She has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Ontario. With direct family experience of Parkinson’s, Joyce brings a deep commitment to the need to support caregivers and engage today’s youth.

On the move

We offer a hearty welcome to Vanessa Foran, Director of Policy Partnerships and Government Relations at Parkinson Society Canada / Neurological Health Charities Canada. Our best wishes to Shannon McDonald who has joined Rx&D as Vice-President, Public Affairs and Partnerships.

Keeping Parkinson’s issues front and centre

Parkinson’s Disease and Aging – A Case for Support

October 2011 – Parkinson Society Canada submitted a brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Health, as background information for its study on chronic diseases related to aging.

Neurological Health Charities Canada – Policy Briefing Note – November 2011

November 2011 – Neurological Health Charities Canada submitted a brief outlining the elements of a National Brain Strategy to the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology, which is responsible for making recommendations on Canada’s current Health Accord.

Parkinson’s Disease – An Ontario Perspective

December 2011 – Parkinson Societies in Ontario participated in a pre-budget consultation meeting with the Honourable Dwight Duncan, Minister of Finance for Ontario, in mid-December 20l1. A brief in support of this presentation was submitted in January 2012.

Principles to guide healthcare transformation in Canada

Parkinson Society Canada participated, along with several healthcare organizations, in a consultation meeting hosted by the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) and Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) to discuss a common set of principles developed by the CMA and CNA to guide healthcare transformation in Canada.

Nominate a volunteer for National Volunteer Awards by March 31, 2012

Each year, Parkinson Society Canada accepts nominations for three national awards to celebrate the dedication, leadership and generosity of extraordinary volunteers who share our vision of a better life with a brighter future for Canadians living with Parkinson’s disease. Nominations for the 2012 awards will be accepted until March 31, 2012. Read more >>

Setting standards for Parkinson’s diagnosis, treatment and care


The Parkinson Research Alliance, a consortium of neurologists, scientists and Parkinson Society Canada, is working to create the first Canadian Consensus Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Parkinson’s disease, based on the best published evidence and expert consensus. The Guidelines have been submitted to the Canadian Journal of Neurological Sciences for publication in 2012.


The European Parkinson’s Disease Association has launched the European Parkinson’s Disease Standards of Care Consensus Statement, a set of plain language guidelines on optimal Parkinson’s disease management and care. The Consensus Statement, issued in November 2011, was developed, reviewed and endorsed by European Parkinson’s specialists, people with Parkinson’s, care partners and 45 national Parkinson’s organizations.

Webinar on cognitive impairment in Parkinson’s coming in April

Oury MonchiParkinson Society Canada is hosting a webinar on Cognitive Impairment in Parkinson’s disease, on Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 1 p.m. EST. The presenter will be Dr. Oury Monchi of the Centre de recherche de l’Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal (IUGM), at University of Montreal. Registration details will be posted on

Research – In the News

Scientists Identify Protein That Contributes to Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease:

First Step In Strategy For Cell Replacement Therapy In Parkinson’s Disease:
Medical News Today

Inability To Express Emotion May Be An Early Symptom Of Parkinson’s Disease:
Medical News Today

How Alpha-Synuclein Interacts With Cell Membranes In Parkinson’s Disease:
Medical News Today

Biologists a Step Nearer to Solving the Parkinson’s Conundrum:

Causes of Parkinson’s disease: Literature Review:

A comparative analysis of how Michael J. Fox and Muhammad Ali changed the world’s views on Parkinson’s disease:

Temporal discrimination learning for treatment of gait dysfunction in Parkinson’s disease: a feasibility study using single subject design:

Web resources created by people with Parkinson’s

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All material related to Parkinson's disease contained in Parkinson Post is solely for the information of the reader. It should not be used for treatment purposes. Specific articles reflect the opinion of the writer and are not necessarily the opinion of PSC.

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