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In this month's newsletter:
  • What is Parkinson's Disease?
  • World Hand Hygiene Day
  • World Asthma Day
  • Covid-19
  • One Touch Health
  • Refer a Friend
What is Parkinson's Disease?

Parkinson’s disease (Parkinson’s) is a progressive neurological disorder, and is classified as a Movement Disorder, as it primarily affects movement. It is variable in its progression, i.e. some people progress more slowly than others, and the symptoms can be effectively controlled with medication for many years.

Parkinson’s disease is caused by a loss of a chemical called dopamine. We all lose some of this chemical as we get older, however, it is only when we have lost about 80% of our dopamine we start to have symptoms. So people with Parkinson’s have lost this chemical at a faster rate than others.

What is Parkinsonism?
Parkinsonism is an umbrella term that describes conditions that feature the main symptoms of Parkinson’s (tremor, rigidity and slowness of movement). About 85% of people with Parkinsonism have Parkinson’s. The other 15% have other rarer conditions such as Drug Induced Parkinson’s, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP), Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) and Parkinsonism secondary to other medical problems, such as after a stroke.

At What Age Does Parkinson’s Disease Occur?
Parkinson’s is most commonly diagnosed in a person’s 60’s. It can however also affect younger people. People presenting with Parkinson’s between 40-60 years old are said to have Early Onset Parkinson’s, those between 21-40 years old are generally described as having Young Onset Parkinson’s, while those with symptoms occurring before the age of 20 are described as having Juvenile Parkinsonism.

How Common is Parkinson’s Disease?
Parkinson’s is the second most common neurodegenerative condition after Alzheimer’s. The incidence is 1-2:1000 of the general population and 1:100 of the over 80’s, therefore estimating that there are approximately 12,000 people living with Parkinson’s in Ireland.

What Causes Parkinson’s Disease?
It is not yet known exactly why people get Parkinson’s, but researchers suspect that in most cases it is a combination of a number of genetic and environmental factors that cause the dopamine-producing nerve cells in the brain to die off. There are also emerging data to suggest that Parkinson’s in a large proportion of “young- onset” and “juvenile” cases is of genetic origin, due to a variety of gene mutations, rather than sporadic in nature.

To learn more about Parkinson’s which can aid you in caring for your service users with this diagnosis, please see the below link to a free course  with Open, Learn Create.
OLCreate: Parkinsons_1.0 Understanding Parkinson’s for health and social care staff ( 
World Hand Hygiene Day - 5th May

Hand Hygiene includes cleaning hands with alcohol-based hand rub (ABHR) or soap and water in order to remove germs, also known as microorganisms. It is now more important than ever to ensure we have effective handwashing techniques and Infection control practices while caring for our clients in the community. Here is a basic step by step you tube clip from the HSE.

World Asthma Day - May 3  

Asthma is a condition that affects the airways- the small tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs. In asthma, the airways become over-sensitive; meaning that they react to things that wouldn’t usually cause a problem, such as cold air or dust.
When the airways react to a substance, the muscles of the tube walls tighten up, making them narrow and leaving little room for air to flow in and out. The lining of the airways then gets swollen (just like your nose during a cold) and sticky mucus is produced which clogs up the breathing passages.
With so little space in the airways, it becomes difficult for air to move in and out and the chest has to work much harder to breathe. Tightening of the muscles around the airways can happen quickly; this is the most common cause of mild asthma symptoms. 

Thankfully, this tightness can be relieved quickly with a reliever inhaler (usually blue). However, the swelling and mucus happen more slowly and need a different treatment. This usually is usually a preventer inhaler which is taken daily to allow the effect to build up over time. 
The majority of people with asthma are prescribed a daily preventer inhaler to protect against an asthma attack and a reliever inhaler to use when symptoms occur. It is extremely important that preventer medication is taken regularly, as prescribed and even when asthma symptoms are not present 
  • Anyone can develop asthma but it is particularly common in Ireland, where over 380,000 adults and children have the condition. 
We have some helpful resources and links for you look at 
Understanding Asthma: Mild, Moderate, and Severe - YouTube
Coronavirus ~ COVID-19 🦠

All the information you need regarding COVID-19.
In relation to Covid-19 ensure you are kept up to date on the most recent guidance from the HSE & HSPC websites. Remember:

•  All staff must wear gloves, apron and FFP2 mask for all visits in a client’s home. Correct donning and doffing of PPE must be completed on entering and leaving the home. Change of PPE if needed between tasks such as personal case is permitted once clean PPE is put on.

•  Handwashing must be completed on entering the home and leaving. In between tasks carried out

•  All carers are to wear enhanced PPE (FFP2 Mask, goggles/visors, full gowns, gloves) when working with a client who is Covid positive. Please contact your local client care manager/nurse manager so this can be provided to you.

•  All your clothes should be washed daily using a minimum 60 degree cycle. If possible, leave your work shoes outside or in the car.

Please remember to self-monitor for COVID symptoms minimum twice daily as per guidelines. If you have a sore throat, blocked/runny nose, cough, aches/pain, tiredness/fatigue, loss of taste/smell, severe headache or any other unusual symptom please contact your GP and Myhomecare immediately for advice before continuing your client calls.

You must inform the office if you are displaying any symptoms of Covid-19, are a close contact or have received a positive antigen test. If you are awaiting a PCR test you cannot return to work until result has come back and it is negative. 

Some helpful links are outlined below with guidance and video resources available

One Touch Health

It is important that you record your tasks and care provided in the notes section daily for each client. If you have any issues using the system, please contact your local team who will be happy to help!
Refer A Friend 💶


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My Home Care · Second Floor, Quayside Business Park · Mill St · Dundalk, Co Louth LH · Ireland

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