Focus on creativity

Creative Expressions is a new web page we have launched to honour the artistic talents of the many people with Parkinson’s who have chosen to communicate and express themselves through creative writing, visual art and crafts.

Visit Creative Expressions to see their work.


Working with One Voice

Yvon Trepanier By Yvon Trepanier,
Chair, National Advocacy Committee

First steps taken toward national research study

Over 3,000 people with or affected by neurological disorders responded to an online questionnaire, in February 2009, asking what types of information should be collected for a four-year national research study to uncover the incidence, prevalence, risk factors and impacts of neurological conditions across Canada. The study is spearheaded by Neurological Health Charities Canada (NHCC), a collective of organizations that represent people with chronic, often progressive, brain diseases, disorders and injuries in Canada. The federal government has committed $15 million to fund the project. Parkinson Society Canada plays a leadership role in the NHCC.

Tulips sent to Parliament Hill

For the April Parkinson’s Awareness Month, the National Advocacy Committee:
• sent fresh tulips to the Prime Minister and federal Minister of Health;
• had an Awareness Month announcement  read in the House of Commons by Barrie MP Patrick Brown (download wmv), and read in the Senate by Senator Sharon Carstairs;
• mailed Research Highlights (pdf) to all MPs and Senators, along with a letter signed by PSC President & CEO Joyce Gordon and National Advocacy Committee Chair, Yvon Trepanier;
• sent an information page to all MPs for inclusion in their householder newsletters.

Tell us your experiences of genetic discrimination

PSC is participating in an initiative, led by the Huntington Society of Canada, to persuade the federal government to create legislation that will protect the privacy of individual genetic information and protect against discrimination based on genetic predisposition to disease. If you have had personal experience of either a breach of privacy of genetic information or genetic discrimination, contact us at

Meet us at the PSC Advocacy Café

Advocating for a better life for Canadians with Parkinson’s disease and their families is a community effort. We need your voice and support. You can join us at the PSC Advocacy Café to share information and ideas on how we can work together, or send an email to


SuperWalk for Parkinson’s 2009 registration is now open!

SuperWalk Logo 2009

Register Here!

You could win one of two terrific Early Bird prizes!

SuperWalk for Parkinson’s 2009 takes place on Saturday, September 12th and Sunday, September 13th, in over 80 communities across Canada. Join in the excitement as SuperWalk heroes unite to bring Canadians one step closer to a cure for Parkinson’s.

You have made SuperWalk for Parkinson’s Parkinson Society Canada’s largest national fundraising event. It is also at the core of the Society’s efforts in the battle against this debilitating disease that affects more than 100,000 Canadians. Together with you, our goal is to raise over $2.4 million to fund research, education, advocacy and support services for people living with Parkinson’s.

Naturegg is a proud National Sponsor, for a fifth year and Megg, the Naturegg Early Bird is already breaking in her new walking shoes.

Join the Naturegg Early Bird at SuperWalk for Parkinson’s 2009!

Register now  to enter the draw for Early Bird prizes!
· Raise $100 online, by April 30, for a chance to win a $500 Chapters/Indigo gift card
· Raise $250 online, by May 31, for a chance to win a 32″ SHARP AQUOS TV

Note: Winners will be announced on the SuperWalk website. Contest is not open to employees of PSC and its regional partners or to any members of their immediate families.


Critical Illness Insurance

By Mark Halpern, CFP

Members of the Parkinson community know that a critical illness is a life-altering experience.

That’s why healthy family members, friends and caregivers need to know about Critical Illness Insurance (CI) and why it’s so important to get CI while you are healthy.

CI pays a lump sum, tax free, 30 days after the diagnosis of a covered condition, including Parkinson’s disease.

Coverage can range from $25,000 to $2,000,000. You can use the money for whatever you wish:
– Pay off debts
– Supplement income
– Pay for quicker medical treatment outside of Canada
– Take an extended vacation to improve recovery
– Make alterations to your home that may be necessary because of your new condition
– Just stop working and concentrate on recovery

Almost 2 dozen conditions are covered.

And if you are fortunate enough to stay healthy and never make a claim on your CI policy, your premiums can be returned to you, in full.

If you die while the policy is in force, and you did not receive a CI benefit while you were alive, all the premiums will be refunded to your family/estate in full.

The policies are issued by the largest insurance companies in Canada such as Manulife, Canada Life, RBC, Sunlife and Great West Life.

Visit: for more information.

Mark Halpern, CFP has been an independent insurance advisor since 1991. Halpern has been recognized by Manulife Financial as the top living benefits advisor in Canada. He advises clients and the media across the country on a variety of insurance products and services. He lectures internationally within the insurance industry and is a sought after speaker for banks, trade associations, corporations and professional groups.


Message from the editor

Welcome to the latest edition of E Parkinson Post!

We all know how important it is to maintain good relationships with our health care professionals, such as family physicians, specialists and physiotherapists. Whether it’s asking the right questions and getting reassuring answers or knowing how to get an appointment in a timely manner, it helps to know how to navigate the health care system.

This issue is devoted to improving communication with health care professionals. We asked both people with Parkinson’s and health care professionals for their best advice. Larry Peabody, a person with Parkinson’s and someone who has worked in health care, shares his perspective. You’ll also find tips from a neurologist, clinical nurse specialist and physiotherapist, all of whom have lots of experience with Parkinson’s disease.

We’ve also provided articles on other areas of interest and profile Dr. Ami Gupta, a young physician-scientist. Please visit us at for more information.

Comments, questions, and story ideas are always welcome. You can send them to

We hope you enjoy.

Marjie Zacks