Parkinson’s disease is the most common neurogenerative movement disorder in Germany. About 300,000 people are affected, and the disease’s prevalence is expected to increase in the future due to demographic change. Typical symptoms include tremors in the arms and legs as well as impaired gait, speech, and swallowing. In advanced stages, cognitive impairment may occur, sometimes progressing to dementia. Although Parkinson’s disease cannot be cured, its progression can be delayed with the help of medication and an activating therapy consisting of physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy. Currently, however, only one third of all Parkinson’s patients receive specific activating therapy.
The Parkinson AKTIV project is committed to enabling more people with Parkinson’s disease to receive an activating therapy. The first priority is to improve the communication between the service providers involved in order to adjust the range of therapies to the individual needs of the patients. Numerous specialists are already part of the multidisciplinary Parkinson’s Network Münsterland. A web-based communication platform and so-called quickcards will be used to further improve the exchange of information within the scope of the project. The quickcards contain patient-relevant information and guideline-based therapy recommendations. They will be made accessible to those providing treatment, so that everyone involved in the care process will have access to the information they need to design and coordinate activating therapy on a patient-specific basis.
The accompanying scientific study will include an evaluation design with an intervention and control group. It will be determined whether the quality of life of people with Parkinson’s disease can be improved by the intervention.
The project will receive ca. 2.6 million euros in funding from the Innovation Fund over a period of three and a half years.
If the project is successful, the networking of all service providers involved can also be implemented in other regions with the help of the web-based communication platform. The quickcards could be established as an important element of the new healthcare concept, regardless of a specific infrastructure.