I hope you are as excited about the Patient Empowerment Day this Wednesday 20th June as I am. We are organising it in association with Parkinson’s Movement, an initiative of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust. We have a number of distinguished experts who will either talk and / or give demonstrations in their field of expertise. In particular, we have two keynote speakers and here’s a little bit about them:
Prof. Bastiaan R. Bloem, MD, PhD
Consultant Neurologist and advocate for participatory medicine.
Professor Bas Bloem is a consultant neurologist at the Department of Neurology, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, The Netherlands. He received his MD degree (with honours) at Leiden University Medical Centre in 1993. In 1994, he obtained his PhD degree in Leiden, based on a thesis entitled “Postural reflexes in Parkinson’s disease”. He was trained as a neurologist between 1994 and 2000, also at Leiden University Medical Centre. He received additional training as a movement disorders specialist during fellowships at ‘The Parkinson’s Institute’, Sunneyvale, California (with Dr. J.W. Langston), and at the Institute of Neurology, Queen Square, London (with Prof. N.P. Quinn and Prof. J.C. Rothwell). In 2002, he founded and became Medical Director of the Parkinson Centre Nijmegen (ParC), which was recognised from 2005 onwards as centre of excellence for Parkinson’s disease. Together with Dr. Marten Munneke, he also developed ParkinsonNet, an innovative healthcare concept that now consists of 64 professional networks for Parkinson patients covering all of the Netherlands (www.parkinsonnet.nl). ParkinsonNet has received several awards, including the prize ‘Best Pearl for Healthcare Innovation’ in 2011.
President and Co Founder of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust.
Tom Isaacs was diagnosed with Parkinson’s at the young age of 26 and since then has done everything he can to raise funds, heighten awareness and find a cure for the disease which is still perceived by many to only affect older people. Having successfully completed his 1250 mile sponsored walk from John O’Groats to Lands End in 1999, he left his job as a director of a London property company in April 2002 to undertake his Coastin’ challenge. By April 2003, Tom had walked 4,500 miles around the British coastline, climbed the highest mountains in England, Scotland and Wales and run the Flora London Marathon, raising over £350,000. In 2004 he was runner-up in the GMTV/Daily Mirror Fundraiser of the Year Award and in 2005 he was elected Charity Personality of the Year.
A year later he co-founded The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, an organisation of which he is President and which has since gone on to raise over £5.5 million and has been involved in funding and facilitating ground breaking research in Parkinson’s. Tom has written a book “Shake Well Before Use” about his walk and his experiences with Parkinson’s which he conveys with passion, optimism and humour. He speaks regularly about his condition and the ability of people with Parkinson’s to inject urgency into progressing the delivery of new therapies to the clinic.