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Parkinson’s disease knows no language barriers

Parkinson’s disease knows no language barriers

Parkinson’s Awareness Week from 1 to 7 November 2009 will be marked by the launch of pamphlets in the 10 most commonly spoken languages in New Zealand.

The theme ‘Korero Mai – Speak to me’ will see Parkinson’s New Zealand, and their 20 divisions across the country, focus on reaching out to families affected by Parkinson’s disease who may find English-only material a barrier to access to vital information.

‘A diagnosis of Parkinson’s can be hard to comprehend and for people who speak little or no English it can be even more confusing, stressful and alienating,‘ says the National Director of Parkinson’s New Zealand, Deirdre O’Sullivan.

In addition to the English and Te Reo Māori versions, An Introduction to Parkinson’s, which describes Parkinson’s disease symptoms, treatments and related services, will be available in Arabic, Hindi, Korean, Samoan, Spanish, Tongan, traditional Chinese and simplified Chinese.

The multilingual pamphlets were launched at Parliament on Thursday 29th October to a crowd of Parkinson’s New Zealand members, community figures and cultural leaders.

According to the 2006 census, 2.2 percent of New Zealand’s population, or 88,000 people, cannot maintain an everyday conversation in English, and over 671,000 people in New Zealand speak two or more languages.

Parkinson’s New Zealand is proud to work towards being more accessible to all New Zealanders affected by Parkinson’s, as Parkinson’s does not discriminate – it can affect anyone of any age and ethnicity.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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