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The Parkinson's Disease Foundation Announces the Addition of an Online Course to its Signature Research Advocacy Training Program

The Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF) announces a new online dimension to its Parkinson's Advocates in Research (PAIR) program — an innovative and widely-hailed initiative that provides training and education to leading laypersons in the Parkinson's community so they are able to influence research and help speed the development of new treatments.

The new initiative — a free, interactive, four-part online research advocacy course, to be launched in June 2012 — will offer individuals the opportunity to learn from experts in the field about the science of Parkinson's and the process that brings new treatments to market.  It will also prepare them with the leadership and advocacy skills they will need to interact confidently with people in government, science and industry who share a commitment to finding new treatments. 

The new online course will offer the core components of PDF's Learning Institute — an intensive, three-day, in-person research advocacy training program — all from the comfort of home.  Initiated in 2008, the Learning Institute has graduated more than 150 Research Advocates from 36 states.  Individuals who complete the online course will work closely with these Research Advocates, PDF staff and local research centers to find ways to influence and advance Parkinson's research in their communities. 

In a related move, PDF plans to centralize its portfolio of research advocacy tools.  This process includes moving information about clinical studies that is currently found at  — the first website of its kind, launched to 2004, to provide information about Parkinson's clinical trials — to a centralized research advocacy hub at by June 30, 2012.  At that time, will cease operations and individuals seeking information on clinical trials can visit, or

PDF Executive Director Robin Elliott commented, "We are confident that expanding the reach of our Parkinson's Advocates in Research program through this online training course and centralizing the resources available to our Research Advocates will provide communities with informed leaders whose perspectives are crucial and whose formal training has prepared them to partner with local institutions to take research to the next level."


Source Date: Mar 30 2012