Volunteer Eric unites with academics to improve Parkinson’s awareness in university education

Eric Corcoran, committee member for South Liverpool Parkinson’s Support Group, has joined forces with University of Liverpool School of Medicine to help get Parkinson’s understood

Eric Corcoran was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2009, 3 years into his retirement. After his diagnosis, Eric and his wife Helen joined their local Parkinson’s group, South Liverpool Parkinson’s support group. Upon meeting other people with Parkinson’s, Eric realised there’s a gap in Parkinson’s awareness at university-level healthcare education.

Eric reached out to the University of Liverpool School of Medicine in a bid to increase understanding of Parkinson’s amongst health care students. In response to Eric, the university organised a group of 3 medics from the Community Medicine Group to meet with him and share ideas.

Eric contacted other members of the Parkinson's community to meet with the group fortnightly. They were kindly offered rooms to meet in by the local church, Bridge Chapel.

Each of these sessions were focused on 3 areas: diagnosis, living with Parkinson’s and the future with Parkinson’s. Participants split into smaller groups and the students had a chance to further their understanding about living with Parkinson’s.

The students fed back that the sessions were really helpful. They found real-life stories helped them understand Parkinson’s better. And the members of the Parkinson’s community who took part enjoyed raising awareness of the realities of Parkinson’s. 

Well done to everyone involved!

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