"Do what you can to help the Parkinson's Community! Parkinson's Patients create hand-made crafts to raise money for Chilean clinic"
Organization:La Liga Chilena Contra de Mal de Parkinson
Date of visit Jan/04
Drive Around the World Visited the Liga Chilena Contra el Mal de Parkinson in the heart of Santiago. The Liga is a Chilean Parkinson's clinic committed to taking care of the Parkinson's community in Chile. It works to defray medical costs and promote the health and well being of its members. The clinic serves more than 5,000 patients in the Santiago area; however, it is thought that there are more than 40,000 Parkinson's cases in all of Chile, with as many as 10,000 in Santiago alone, including "one early-onset" case in a 15-year-old. A big challenge in Chile's Parkinson's community is accurate diagnosing. Although there are many doctors, there is not enough information known about the disease and how to identify it, which results in many undiagnosed cases.
"Drive Around the World" members were able to visit the clinic and see the Parkinson's community in action. Patients come here two times a week to receive attention from three different neurologists, Dr. Roque Villagra, Dr. Marcelo Miranda, and Dr. Pablo Venegas. The clinic also provides physical therapy services, dentistry services, and access to lower-cost medicine. Costs are always a problem. Parkinson's patients take a lot of medication, which will continue throughout their lives. The Parkinson's League receives some financial assistance from the government, but they are always searching for other ways in which to make additional money for their programs. To help raise money to defray medical expenses for League members, some of the center patients make and sell wall hangings out of dried flowers.
The League has been around for 7 years, and we saw first hand how it continues to serve its community and further it's mission.