English Review The Parkinson’s pandemic a script for action

The Parkinson’s Pandemic a script for action

Review The Parkinson’s pandemic a script for action by Hans van Geluk

Authors Bastiaan R Bloem and Jorrit Hoff, coauthors Michael S Okun – Todd Sherer – Ray Dorsey

The fact is that it is slowly starting to look like a pandemic.

Whether you are someone with Parkinson’s or not, a caregiver or a specialist for someone with Parkinson’s or not, this book would be good for anyone to read. Worldwide there are around 8 million people with Parkinson’s and in the Netherlands alone around 60,000.

When asked by Bas Bloem if I could also review this book, I received the answer, ‘Yes, please even’

So, I feel honored and privileged to write a review about this book after the book ‘EndingPD, a script for action, which I was allowed to review in 2020.

Whether you are 20 (the youngest person with Parkinson’s by Bas Bloem was 14 and Jorrit Hoff’s 28), 40, 60 or 80 years old, man or woman, everyone can get Parkinson’s disease.

Book The Parkinson’s Pandemic Should Wake Everyone Up

The authors, Professor of Neurology Bastiaan R Bloem and neurologist Jorrit Hoff, both very passionate and enthusiastic top neurologists, describe (incidentally together with equally passionate and enthusiastic co-authors Michael S Okun, Todd Sherer and Ray Dorsey) in this book the problems that contribute to people getting Parkinson’s disease. How it came about to fight against it and what we must do now to fight, prevent and stop it.

While ‘EndingPD, a script for action’ was more focused on the USA, the book ‘The Parkinson Pandemic, a script for action’ is a translated version of the English version, it is very clearly aimed at the Netherlands and Belgium.

It is not for nothing that Bas Bloem says the following: ‘I would like to be out of work tomorrow, because then I know that I have achieved my goal, Parkinson’s out of the world.’

And Jorrit Hoff writes: ‘It is realistic that in 5 to 10 years we will be able to inhibit the disease in some people.’

The authors talk about how Parkinson’s disease was discovered, what the causes are to be able to get it and how to act to prevent it. In addition, they provide insight and explanation about Parkinson’s.

That is why I hope that all faculties, not only the medical faculties, but also the other faculties, universities, colleges and secondary schools, will use this book in teaching programs. And the government, managers and directors of companies are also going to read this book, in order to better protect citizens and staff from exposure to toxic substances. This is to warn the younger generations and employees about where we need to implement changes in the coming decades. We the current generation of baby boomers and generation X are obliged to start making changes for GenZ and GenAlpha now.

The foreword is given by the chairman of the Parkinson Vereniging Nederland Jan Lantink, also an enthusiastic man in the Field of Parkinson’s. His wife also has Parkinson’s disease and Jan has been working for the Parkinson Vereniging Nederland for years. He writes, among other things,

, The ambition and the challenge to prevent, slow down and stop Parkinson’s – expressed in the book with the acronym PACT: Prevention, Advocacy, Care and Treatment – are also exactly the reason why the Parkinson Association has wholeheartedly contributed to the formation of another pact: the Parkinson Alliance Netherlands.’

The book is very accessible and clearly written. The nice thing about it is that the text is not written one after the other, but in short pieces so that you as a reader can absorb the piece better and take a break. In addition, you can easily put the book away and continue later.

The introduction tells us how the two authors got to know each other and how they went this way together to pursue the same goal. Parkinson’s out of the world! The introduction states, among other things,

‘Worldwide, Parkinson’s is the fastest growing brain disease. In the past thirty years, the number of people with Parkinson’s has doubled. In 2015, there were 6.3 million patients worldwide. If it continues like this, there are expected to be 12.9 million people with the disease worldwide by 2040. Some even speak of a ‘Parkinson’s pandemic’.

‘In the Netherlands, too, the number of people with Parkinson’s is increasing rapidly. There are now more than 60,000 people with Parkinson’s or Parkinsonism in our country.

It’s time to act.

The book takes you by the hand and shows the zeitgeist from discovering Parkinson’s disease to the current situation. Based on personal stories of fellow Parkinsonians, scientists, doctors and references to studies, you will gain more insight into Parkinson’s disease. From heredity to environmental factors.

The Industrial Revolution has brought us a lot to date, but unfortunately it also has its downside. In any case if you read the book, there is clear evidence that toxic substances such as crop protection, particulate matter, solvents and volatile substances can also cause Parkinson’s disease.

‘The Parkinson Pandemic, a script for action’ is a clear signal to the government to ban various toxic substances, to applaud biological substitutes and to make us people more aware of what we are doing. The book also provides insight into the care in general and especially the care for us Parkinsonians. In the Netherlands we are privileged to have such a good healthcare system, but here too the shoe has been pinching for a long time. Due to Covid-19, we were all put to the test and have not yet got rid of it.

Now that another pandemic is emerging, the healthcare system is under even more pressure and prevention is better than cure, right. So now it’s time for action. Not only for today’s people with diseases such as Parkinson’s, but especially for the generation after us. We, the elderly, baby boomers and generation X have let it slip out of our hands. Now we can still save it, pick it up again and reverse it somewhat. If we want to. Me, do you?

Stopping Parkinson’s starts now!

There is hope on the horizon, one expects that in 15 years there will be new insights. Perhaps a new drug that can inhibit Parkinson’s or maybe even stop it. But as always with such an endeavor, it requires money, a lot of money. It was possible for Polio, for HIV and for Covid-19.

Now it must be for this annoying asshole disease, Parkinson’s!

Contribute to the PACT, Prevention (preventing the disease), Active advocacy (more activists who need to raise awareness about Parkinson’s, influence policy and stand up for extra resources), Comfortable care (better care and quality of life for all involved), Applying the latest treatment methods (new and more effective treatments).  

Thank you, Bas Bloem, Jorrit Hoff, Michael S Okun, Todd Sherer and Ray Dorsey for this more than excellent book.

Review by Hans van Geluk,
Parkinson(isme) en verkeersdeelnemer

‘Everything indicates that within 10 years we will take major steps against Parkinson’s.’

Bas Bloem, neurologist specialized in Parkinson’s

‘Parkinson’s is also affecting more and more young people in the power of their lives.’

Jorrit Hoff, neurologist specialized in Parkinson’s


Stopping Parkinson’s starts now!

The Parkinson Alliance Netherlands has formulated several ambitious objectives,

In ten years’, time, fewer people will get the disease.

• In thirty years – around the year 2050 – Parkinson’s will be out of the world.

• In five years’, time, there will have to be less visible progression in the clinical picture.

In ten years, we should be able to stop the progression of the disease and in fifteen years a cure will be possible.

Ambitious goals, but that’s not all. The alliance also wants to achieve appealing results about the number of hospital admissions and admissions to nursing homes.

The book can be ordered from ParkinsonNL, the fundraiser for the Parkinson Alliantie Nederland and costs € 29.50.

Order your copy here

Support the fight against Parkinson’s

€5 of every book sold is donated to ParkinsonNL. The new fund against Parkinson’s will really make a difference for people with Parkinson’s by initiating and funding groundbreaking research  and innovative treatment methods.

Would you like to know in which ways you can also help us? Look at the page Help me!


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