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Parkinsons Dis. 2012;2012:543426. doi: 10.1155/2012/543426. Epub 2012 Feb 8.

Improving community healthcare for patients with Parkinson's disease: the dutch model.

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Department of Neurology, Nijmegen Centre for Evidence Based Practice, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, P.O. Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


Because of the complex nature of Parkinson's disease, a wide variety of health professionals are involved in care. Stepwise, we have addressed the challenges in the provision of multidisciplinary care for this patient group. As a starting point, we have gained detailed insight into the current delivery of allied healthcare, as well as the barriers and facilitators for optimal care. To overcome the identified barriers, a tertiary referral centre was founded; evidence-based guidelines were developed and cost-effectively implemented within regional community networks of specifically trained allied health professionals (the ParkinsonNet concept). We increasingly use ICT to bind these professional networks together and also to empower and engage patients in making decisions about their health. This comprehensive approach is likely to be feasible for other countries as well, so we currently collaborate in a European collaboration to improve community care for persons with Parkinson's disease.

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