A center of excellence, again

A center of excellence, again

By Marilee Griffin

Staff members with the UF Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration, led by Dr. Michael Okun and Dr. Kelly Foote (center), pause for a celebratory Gator chomp after receiving continued designation as a Center of Excellence./Photo by Jesse S. Jones

The Parkinson’s disease clinical practice within the UF Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration has been designated a Center of Excellence by the National Parkinson Foundation for the third time.

The Center of Excellence, part of the McKnight Brain Institute of UF, is one of three in Florida and one of 41 worldwide. Centers of excellence must meet numerous criteria for research, comprehensive care, patient outreach services and professional education. For example, patients must have access to a wide array of treatment options, ranging from surgical to experimental therapies. Clinical training and research is prioritized, and patients and caregivers must receive access to educational seminars, support groups and wellness programs. Centers must reapply for the designation every five years.

“It’s an honor to be recognized by the National Parkinson Foundation as a Center of Excellence, and it also reignites the challenge to keep working as a team and looking for new ways to serve our patients,” said director Irene Malaty, M.D., an assistant professor of neurology in the UF College of Medicine.