State Representative Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen) recently welcomed advocates from the Merrimack Valley and across the Commonwealth to the State House for the latest meeting of the state legislature’s Parkinson’s Disease Caucus.
The caucus provides legislators an opportunity to learn more about Parkinson’s and consider legislative steps to address the neurological disease, which affects between 500,000 and 1.5 million Americans and is the 14th leading cause of death in the United States. It is estimated that 60,000 people are diagnosed each year in the U.S. with Parkinson’s and its prevalence is expected to more than double by the year 2040. The exact cause of the disease, which is chronic and progressive, with no treatment to slow or halt its progression, remains unknown.
Joining the Representative for the caucus meeting were the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, Rock Steady Boxing, the National Parkinson Foundation and the Massachusetts chapters of the Parkinson’s Action Network (PAN) and American Parkinson’s Disease Association (APDA).
During the caucus, DiZoglio presented a resolution, co-sponsored by 47 other legislators from across the Commonwealth, proclaiming the month of April as Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month in Massachusetts.
DiZoglio officially created and launched the Parkinson’s Disease Caucus last November.
“Increased research, education and community support services are needed to find more effective treatments and to provide access to quality care to those living with Parkinson’s Disease today,” said DiZoglio. “I am honored to serve as chair of this caucus and committed to continue raising awareness about the disease with citizens from the Merrimack Valley and across the Commonwealth. Thank you to North Andover’s Charles Brown, Massachusetts state director of the Parkinson’s Action Network, for his inspirational comments at this month’s meeting and for helping to organize the event.”