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Parkinson's Disease Foundation Invests in Next Generation of Nursing Leaders

The Parkinson's Disease Foundation® (PDF®) is pleased to announce eight new training opportunities for nursing faculty as part of The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF. The program improves nursing care in Parkinson's disease (PD) by training nurse faculty leaders who in turn, prepare their students to fight the disease on the front lines.

Research suggests that increased preparation of nurses can lead to significant improvement in the health and well-being of people with Parkinson's disease. Yet both nursing students and faculty have reported the need for better training. The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF offers interactive trainings where nurse faculty can learn from the best in the field about the disease and gain skills for preparing the next generation of nurses to treat it.

"We are thrilled to welcome the newest group of talented nurses to The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF. They join a network of more than 170 scholars who, this year alone, will reach 11,000 students who represent the future of nursing care in Parkinson's," said Gwyn Vernon, M.S.N., R.N., C.R.N.P., Co-Founder and National Director of The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, and nurse practitioner in the Department of Neurology/Parkinson Disease and Movement Disorders Center of the University of Pennsylvania at the Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia, PA.

In 2016, The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF is offering eight trainings at nationally recognized movement disorder centers around the United States. Each one provides a 40-hour curriculum that includes academic instruction, hands-on experience with people with Parkinson's disease, independent study and mentorship from nurse specialists. Upon completing the program, nursing educators have the skills to care for people with Parkinson's disease, design teaching methods for student and clinical nurses, integrate learning into community settings and conduct patient-centric research to improve nursing care in Parkinson's

They also join a network of peer nurse educators who are collaborating with each other and PDF to prepare the next generation of nurses, and to advance research, care and nursing education.

"This program is making a tremendous impact: inspiring hundreds of the country's best nursing professors to devote themselves to teaching and research in Parkinson's disease, and bringing PD education to thousands and thousands of new nurses each year. We wish all of the participants this year much success," said Lily Safra, Chairwoman of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation.

"At PDF, our strategy is to mobilize a team of leaders in research, health care and the patient community to work together to end Parkinson's disease. As we look at the needs of our growing community, we know that nurses are critical to our success," added Robin Anthony Elliott, President of PDF.

Upcoming training dates are listed below. Nurse faculty will be selected through a competitive application process. Those who are accepted can earn up to 40 continuing education units.

Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF: Training Opportunities

Monday, February 22-Thursday, February 25
Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL

Thursday, June 2-Friday, June 3
The Johns Hopkins Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders Center, Baltimore, MD

Tuesday, June 7-Wednesday, June 8
Park Nicollet Struthers Parkinson's Disease Center, Minneapolis, MN

Monday, July 18-Tuesday, July 19
Center for Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders at UCSF Medical Center and at the UCSF VA Medical Center San Francisco, CA

Monday, August 1-Thursday, August 4
Boston University Medical Campus Parkinson's & Movement Disorders Center, Boston, MA

Monday, October 17-Tuesday, October 18
Muhammad Ali Parkinson's Center, Phoenix, AZ

Monday, November 14-Tuesday, November 15
The Marlene and Paolo Fresco Institute for Parkinson's and Movement Disorders at NYU Langone, New York, NY

Fall 2016-Dates To Be Determined
University of Pennsylvania Parkinson Disease and Movement Disorders Center, Philadelphia, PA

About The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF
The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at the Parkinson's Disease Foundation is a 40-hour accredited "train the trainer" program which improves nursing care in Parkinson's disease by training faculty leaders across the United States. Since 2009, the program has trained more than 170 nurse faculty, who are in turn, sharing their knowledge with 11,000 undergraduate nursing students each year to ensure that the next generation of nurses is prepared to fight Parkinson's disease on the front lines. Many of the program's alumni have gone on to become local leaders in Parkinson's disease care, with some developing into national leaders who are changing nursing education. Since 2014, the program has been housed at the Parkinson's Disease Foundation. To learn about the program and to apply to upcoming trainings, visit

About the Edmond J. Safra Foundation 
The Edmond J. Safra Foundation supports hundreds of projects related to science and medicine, education, religion, culture and humanitarian relief in over 40 countries. The Foundation has provided significant funding for Parkinson's disease research and patient care at dozens of hospitals and institutes in places as varied as Natal (Brazil), Toronto, New York, Grenoble, Paris, London, and Jerusalem. For more information, visit

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