The 6th annual World Brain Day on July 22 is dedicated to raising awareness for Parkinson’s Disease, according to a news release.

During this day, the World Federation of Neurology (WFN) is partnering with the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease and to advocate for improved patient care, education, and additional research for those living with the disease and their caregivers.

“Parkinson’s Disease affects people of all ages, including one in 100 people over the age of 60. The prevalence of this disease is on the rise, making our actions today vital to improving the lives of those who have been and will be diagnosed, particularly during this global health crisis. Parkinson’s Disease affects more than 7 million people around the globe—that’s nearly equivalent to the entire population of New York City. Our goal is to raise awareness for Parkinson’s Disease and its impact on society in an effort to improve access to quality neurological care and life-changing treatments.”

— Prof Tissa Wijerante, the World Brain Day chair

While the distinctive symptom of Parkinson’s Disease is shaking and slowness of movement, the degenerative disease affects movement, the mind and brain function generally disrupting sleep and cognitive ability, causing pain and gastrointestinal issues, provoking anxiety and depression, and reducing motivation and quality of life. Early diagnosis and access to effective treatment are vital in order to help patients find relief and enhance their quality of life.

People with Parkinson’s Disease may be particularly impacted by the current COVID-19 pandemic and are encouraged to keep in contact with their healthcare providers, World Federation of Neurology explains in a news release.

“More than one in four people living with Parkinson’s Disease were initially misdiagnosed. Many symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease are poorly recognized and undertreated, which is detrimental for those living with the disease. There is a profound need for improved standards of care across the globe.”

— Prof Wolfgang Grisold, the WFN’s Secretary-General

“The impact of Parkinson’s Disease extends throughout the whole body and reaches every corner of the world. With 60,000 diagnosed each year in the United States alone, it is critical that patients have access to quality care.”

— Claudia Trenkwalder, MD, President of the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society

To advocate for patients, World Brain Day is spreading awareness by asking people all over the world to Move Together to End Parkinson’s Disease through the use of the hashtags #WorldBrainDay and #WBD2020.

“Brain health has never been more vital or relevant. When the world unites against this crippling movement disorder on World Brain Day, we will demonstrate the power of advocacy and awareness.”

— WFN President Prof William Carroll

[Source(s): World Federation of Neurology, PR Newswire]