The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF) was founded by William Black, the founder of Chock full o'Nuts, in 1957. Black started the foundation after learning that his controller and close friend was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. His widow, Page Morton Black, served as PDF’s chairman emeritus until her passing in July 2013.
PDF had an advisory council of people who have PD, and a program to advocate for participation in clinical trials. It also had a help line for people with PD and their families.
The National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) was also founded in 1957; it funded around $20 million in care, research and support services. It was founded by Jeanne C. Levey, whose husband suffered from Parkinson's disease. Levey worked at the foundation until her death in 1979 at age 92.
In 2019, The Parkinson's Foundation began offering free genetic testing to people who have PD through its program PDGENEration.
Mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships
In August 2016, PDF and NPF merged to form the Parkison's Foundation.
In October 2017, the Parkinson's Foundation acquired the Melvin Yahr International Parkinson's Disease Foundation.
In January 2020, the Parkinson's Foundation partnered with Zelira Therapeutics to study the benefits of medical cannabis in PD patients.
The Parkinson’s Foundation Center of Excellence network consists of leading medical centers around the globe that deliver care to more than 100,000 people with Parkinson’s disease. The Center of Excellence designation identifies institutions providing specialized Parkinson’s disease care.
^Kunkle, Frederick (March 2016). "Take Action: For many patients and their families, advocacy is about helping themselves and others—and they say anyone can do it". Neurology Now. 12 (1): 24–26. doi:10.1097/01.NNN.0000480824.32028.d1.
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