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Resources for Farmers with Parkinson’s Disease

May 25, 2023 In Paraquat

A farmer spraying pesticides on the field.Farmers face numerous challenges in their profession, including exposure to harmful chemicals. Unfortunately, one such chemical, Paraquat, has been linked to an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. This incurable, degenerative neurological condition can significantly impact a farmer’s livelihood and quality of life, which is also a common type of damage in a mass tort lawsuit. 

Parkinson’s disease affects the nervous system, causing tremors, stiffness, balance problems, and a range of other motor and non-motor symptoms. These symptoms can hinder a farmer’s physical coordination, mobility, and cognitive functions, making routine tasks and agricultural activities more challenging.

If you are a farmer and were diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, help is available. Many resources are in place to help you navigate the challenges that come with the disease and get the help that you need.

Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research

The Michael J. Fox Foundation is a leading organization focused on finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease. Founded by actor Michael J. Fox, who was diagnosed with the condition in 1991, the foundation funds groundbreaking research initiatives, provides support for individuals living with Parkinson’s, and promotes awareness and advocacy efforts.

Farmers affected by Parkinson’s can access the Michael J. Fox Foundation’s website for reliable information, research updates, and opportunities to participate in clinical trials aimed at advancing the understanding and treatment of Parkinson’s disease.

The Aware in Care Hospital Safety Kit

Many Parkinson’s patients face significant challenges when seeking care at a hospital. For Parkinson’s disease medications, accurate timing and dosing are incredibly important. Despite this, many patients fail to receive medications on time, leading to unnecessary complications and serious risks. 

To address this issue, the Parkinson’s Foundation has published the Aware in Care hospital safety kit, which includes helpful tools and resources to help patients advocate for themselves during their next hospital visit.

What the safety kit includes:

  • A hospital action plan to help patients prepare for their next visit
  • A fact sheet about Parkinson’s disease to share with the patient’s care team
  • A medical alert card, which includes emergency contact information
  • A medication form, which details the time, dosage, and type of medication that the patient is taking
  • A deep brain stimulation information card, which shares information about this medical device with a patient’s care team
  • A hospitalization doctor letter, which highlights the impact that hospital-acquired infections could have on Parkinson’s symptoms and the importance of administering medication on the right schedule

Lotsa Helping Hands

Many people with Parkinson’s disease can struggle to perform daily tasks on their own, especially as the condition progresses into its advanced stages. Lotsa Helping Hands aims to provide in-need patients with valuable support for rides, meals, errands, and other daily activities. Parkinson’s patients or their caregivers can visit the organization’s website to connect with local community members who are ready to provide help.

Parkinson’s Resource Organization

The Parkinson’s Resource Organization offers vital information and support for families navigating the challenges of caring for their loved ones with Parkinson’s disease. The organization provides resources to help with caregiving responsibilities and keep individuals updated on the latest scientific developments and social issues related to the condition, including patient rights. 

With these resources, farmers and their families can gain valuable insights, find guidance, and stay connected with the evolving landscape of Parkinson’s research and advocacy. 

Webinars from the Parkinson’s Foundation

The Parkinson’s Foundation offers free webinars led by experts in the field, providing the latest news and research updates about the condition. While not a substitute for medical advice, these expert briefing webinars serve as a valuable resource, helping patients gain a better understanding of Parkinson’s as a whole. By participating in these webinars and staying informed, patients and their caregivers can learn valuable information and learn important coping strategies for the future.

Parkinson’s Action Network

The Parkinson’s Action Network (PAN) is an organization within the Michael J. Fox Foundation that aims to advance public policy priorities on behalf of Parkinson’s disease patients. PAN serves as a powerful advocacy group, working to improve the lives of those affected by Parkinson’s through legislative action. 

Farmers with Parkinson’s can engage with PAN to stay informed about policy changes, advocate for better healthcare access and research funding, and contribute to shaping a more supportive environment for individuals living with the disease.

Legal Support for Farmers Diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease

In addition to the resources listed above, farmers diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease may also be entitled to legal support. If you were diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and applied the herbicide Paraquat on your farm, the chemical may be responsible for your medical condition. 

Exposure to Paraquat has been linked to a 2–3 times higher risk for Parkinson’s compared to the general population, and the risk is greater for farmers who handled the chemical on a regular basis. In these situations, affected farmers have the right to pursue legal action against Paraquat manufacturers and secure financial compensation for their medical care, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

When considering legal action, it is crucial to contact an attorney with experience in toxic tort and product liability cases. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal complexities and assist you in building a strong case for compensation.

How an attorney can support your case.

How an Attorney Can Support Your Case

  • Gathering evidence: Your attorney will help gather the necessary evidence to build a strong case. This may involve collecting medical records, obtaining expert opinions, reviewing industry practices, and obtaining any relevant documents or records to support your claim.
  • Establishing causation: Establishing a clear causal link between Paraquat exposure and your Parkinson’s diagnosis is crucial. Your attorney will work with medical experts to gather supporting evidence and develop a persuasive argument demonstrating the connection between the exposure and your condition.
  • Negotiating settlements: Your attorney will advocate for your best interests and engage in negotiations with the opposing parties, such as the manufacturers or insurance companies, to pursue a fair settlement on your behalf. 
  • Representing your case in court: If a fair settlement cannot be reached, your attorney will be prepared to take your case to court. He or she will represent you during the proceedings, present evidence, question witnesses, and make compelling arguments to support your claim.

If you believe that Paraquat exposure is responsible for your Parkinson’s disease, schedule a free consultation with a paraquat lawsuit attorney right away. Your lawyer will assess your case and help you take your first steps toward financial recovery.