PD SELF – a learning program designed to help people with Parkinson’s better manage their disease


PD SELF program starting in September 2019.

Please give us your contact information, by filling in the interest form below, to reserve a place in the program starting September 2019.

PD SELF – Parkinson’s Self-Efficacy Learning Forum – A national program, now being offered in Albany for the second time, that provides people with Parkinson’s an in-depth understanding of the disease and the tools to manage it with confidence.  There is no cost to attend.  Registration is required.  Space is limited.

This self-efficacy learning forum is specifically designed for those who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) within the past three years and their care partners. We will learn about the disease and how to approach goals, tasks and challenges.

Sessions will be held starting Wednesday September 18, 2019.  There will be a total of eight monthly sessions. Each session will be from 4:00 – 7:00 on the third Wednesday of the month.  We will meet at the Terrace Community Room at Beverwyck in Slingerlands. – 41 Beverwyck Lane, Slingerlands, NY 12159. (directions)

Debra Virtanen and Jud Eson traveled to Denver in May 2018 to attend a training course to learn how to facilitate the PD SELF program.  Facilitation teams, including a person with a clinical background and a person with PD, came from 11 locations across the country to learn.  Team Albany included Debra, a physical therapist, and Jud, a person with Parkinson’s.  This program is distinct and separate from the Capital District Parkinson’s Support Group.

Many people are handed a diagnosis with very little guidance on what to do next. But the diagnosis is life changing. Facing life with a chronic progressive disease means facing changes to health, relationships, family life, employment and finances.

Research tells us that when people are given the resources to cope with these changes, they are empowered to take an active role in managing PD, leading to better health and quality of life.

Participants are provided with a PD SELF Curriculum Field Guide containing the course content for each of the eight modules.

  1. Adapting to Parkinson’s Disease
  2. Acquiring Self-Efficacy
  3. Creating your personal health care network
  4. Understanding PD medications and treatments including complementary and alternative medicine
  5. Benefiting from exercise and neuro-plasticity
  6. Understanding cognition and non-motor symptoms
  7. Strengthening the relationship between people with Parkinson’s and Care Partner
  8. Going forward

Over the eight modules, participants learn how to master their own relationship to Parkinson’s. The skills and behaviors learned include:

  • Setting and achieving goals
  • Self-monitoring
  • Keeping health care records
  • Communicating with your doctor
  • Establishing new routines
  • Overcoming obstacles
  • Problem solving
  • Reflection and journaling
  • Managing negative emotions
  • Realistic optimism
  • Resilience and tenacity
  • Self-Advocacy

For more information and to register, please visit the PD SELF website at PDSELF.org or send an email to PDSELF.Albany@gmail.com .

If you are interested  in registering, fill out an interest form

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