A new clinic has opened at UCF to best support Huntington’s disease (HD) patients and their families. The UCF Clinic and its sister office at the AdventHealth Neuroscience Institute are designated as partners at Huntington’s Disease Society of America Center of Excellence at the University of South Florida. The UCF Clinic offers multidisciplinary care to neurologists from the UCF College of Medicine, the UCF School of Social Work and the Rehabilitation Professions of the UCF College of Health Professions and Sciences. The UCF Clinic is now open and visits patients at Research Park at 3280 Progress Drive, Suite 500.
“Our clinic integrates clinical care with research opportunities and support groups, which improves how best we support patients and families affected by HD,” said Amber Southwell, a researcher at the College of Medicine who specializes in Huntington’s disease and is co-director of the clinic. “It offers a more comprehensive approach to caring for those affected by the disease, and best connects patients with a rapidly changing field of science that informs how best to address the root cause of the disease.”
To celebrate the launch of the new partner clinic, a special training event was held on May 7 at the UCF Clinic, located in the College of Health Professions and Sciences Rehabilitation Innovation Center. The event brought together healthcare professionals, patients with HD and their families to learn about the latest research, emerging therapies, care for individuals with HD in long-term care facilities and services for people with HD. The special appearance of the hologram was created by the actress Kate Miner from Showtime’s Shameless talk about your family’s experience with HD.
Southwell says the involved community of patients and families helps providers and researchers better meet patients’ needs and offers a much-needed support network.
Research has so far shown the benefits of integrating things such as neurological physical therapy and assistive technologies such as speech generating devices and adaptive devices for mobility and activities of everyday life. The new clinic integrates neurologists, psychologists, speech therapists, physiotherapists, social workers and researchers to provide comprehensive care to patients and their caregivers and to help answer important questions that will move care to further progress.
To learn more about the clinic or to make an appointment, visit the HDSA Center of Excellence website.