A new in-depth fact-finding survey will work to identify service gaps and create improvements for those living with Parkinson’s disease.By Alexandra Bolkas
Members of Shepparton’s Parkinson Support Group will take part in the two-year fact survey.
It will be conducted by Monash University with the support of local doctors and was presented to the group during a meeting last week.
Goulburn Valley Health geriatrician Dr Arup Bhattacharya said the survey would take a holistic approach to analyse the anxieties of patients and their carers.
‘‘It will be looking at (Parkinson’s disease) socio-economic impact, carer stress and how they modify their lives to cope with the illness,’’ Dr Bhattacharya said.
He said the survey would also try to identify any shortcomings in the region’s Parkinson’s disease services.
‘‘The survey will give us the opportunity to understand how rural sufferers fare with regards to access to specialist care,’’ he said.
He said it was the first survey of its kind in regional areas.
The survey is voluntary and will be conducted over a two-year period.
‘‘We hope it will help the government to direct funding where it’s needed most,’’ Dr Bhattacharya said.
Parkinson’s Support Group co-ordinator and secretary Geoffrey Alexander said most of the group members had expressed an interest in participating in the survey.
■ For information on Shepparton Parkinson’s Support group, phone Mr Alexander on 5821 3390.
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