DORCHESTER — The second annual Parkinson’s Disease Symposium for Veterans, First Responders, and Caregivers will be held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Friday, March 20 at Florian Hall in Dorchester, hosted by 110 Fitness in collaboration with St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center’s Department of Neurology. This event is free and open to the public — all are welcome, but seating is limited. Please RSVP by visiting semc-parkinsonsevent.eventbrite.com or by calling Keith J. Ciccone, BS, LPN, Nurse Specialist, Department of Neurology, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center at 617 789 3320.
The symposium will focus on the connection between Parkinson’s Disease, military service, first responders, and the frequency in which we see veterans and first responders diagnosed with PD. Attendees will be provided with an abundance of information as well as resources available to help them live their best lives with Parkinson’s Disease.
The symposium will feature presentations by prominent members in the Parkinson’s healthcare community as well as noteworthy members of the military. Attendees will hear from: Secretary of Veterans Affairs for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Francisco Urena, a Marine Corps veteran; Dr. Okeanis, director, Movement Disorders and DBS, Steward Medical Group/St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center; Brett Miller, Physical Therapist, Owner, 110 Fitness, a retired U.S. Army Combat Medic; Dr. Anna DePold Hohler, MD, FAAN, a movement disorder specialist, Chair, Steward Medical Group, St. Elizabeth;s Medical Center, a former major at Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, Wash.; Irene Piryatinsky, Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center Affiliated Neuropsychological Assessment Clinic; Chip Maury, a retired U.S. Navy diver and parachutist.
The national anthem and a presentation of the colors by a color guard will open the program, which follows a complimentary breakfast. Participants will have a chance to visit vendor tables to learn about important resources available to them.
The second annual Parkinson’s Disease Symposium for Veterans, First Responders, and Caregivers is currently sponsored by Strongbridge Biopharma and Medtronic.
Miller understands the importance of hosting a symposium specifically addressing the needs of veterans and first responders with Parkinson’s Disease.
“We have seen the research and data that shows these populations are at an increased risk of Parkinson’s Disease,” he said. “We also see it every day at 110 Fitness as many of our members with Parkinson’s are veterans or worked as first responders for many years. We work closely with the Neurology department at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center to ensure veterans, first responders, and their caregivers are equipped with the knowledge and tools to fight back against Parkinson’s Disease.”
Dr. Hohler, chairman of the Neurology Department at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, and a former Army Neurologist, provides care to numerous veterans and first responders with Parkinson’s Disease.
“Understanding the risk that these vets and first responders face from environmental toxins and trauma is crucial in mitigating their factors,” she said. “We approach each patient in an individualized way to provide them with holistic care for their motor and non-motor symptoms.”
110 Fitness is an inclusive fitness and wellness center for all people. Easily accessible, located on Weymouth Street in Rockland off exit 14, 110 Fitness offers wellness programs for people with Parkinson’s Disease, boxing and cardio fitness programs for adults and children, adaptive boxing programs for children with disabilities, as well as yoga, tai chi, acupuncture, massage, art programs, and craft workshops, all for adults and children, including personal training and conditioning.
Patient-centered care is a primary focus at St. Elizabeth’s Neurology department. Physicians use the latest clinical examination skills, lab work, and imaging studies to diagnose neurological conditions. Once diagnosed, our patients are provided with advanced medications, surgical procedures, and holistic care to treat their neurological conditions
The neurology department also provides world class care in movement disorders, stroke, headache, neuromuscular conditions, and epilepsy.