Thank you to Maria White for opening her beautiful garden in Canberra in support of her friend Margaret van Belkom. Maria opened her garden for three days in November and it was a huge success raising $6,550. The event included a cafe, raffle, plant sale and Maria's cottage garden full of colour and life with several hundred flowers and plants.


Are you searching for a high quality residential aged care facility, reviewing the quality of your current residential aged care facility or deciding between two residential aged care facilities that appear similar? You may find the recently released '10 questions' series of leaflets produced in consultation with the NSW Aged Care Roundtable helpful. Each leaflet focuses on an individual aspect of care to increase consumer knowledge and make the journey into residential aged care easier: Contracts and fees, Staffing, GP services, Dental and oral health, Rural and remote care, Cultural needs, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, LGBTI(Q) needs, Facilities and lifestyle, Palliative care. You can get the leaflets free online at

Remember if you have concerns about a residential aged care facility contact the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner ph 1800 550 552 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

On 2 and 3 November 2017, at the beautiful Japanese gardens in Cowra in Central West NSW, 18 carers of people with MND came together for the MND NSW Link and Learn program. This is a two day residential program for carers of people with MND who live in regional NSW and the ACT and, this year, we were very fortunate to have secured funding to run this program through a Westpac Community grant. At the end of each of our MND NSW education programs we ask participants to complete an evaluation. In the Link and Learn participant evaluation, 100% of participants said that it was a valuable opportunity to meet with other people who know what it is like to be caring for someone with MND and 93% agreed that it provided information so they can plan ahead and be prepared for change. All said that the program met and exceeded their expectations with comments such as .... “this program is a very valuable insight for anyone in a carers role with plenty of learning, laughter and knowledge gained”.

From 8 to 10 December 2017 the 28th International Symposium on ALS/MND will be held in Boston, USA. The annual Symposium is the largest medical and scientific conference specific to MND/ALS and is the premier event in the MND research calendar for discussion on the latest advances in research and clinical management. Over 1,000 delegates will come from across the world to listen to over 100 talks and see around 450 posters. To see what will be discussed in these presentations, you can now download the full abstract book from the Taylor and Francis website (volume 18, S2 November 2017).

The MND Research Blog reports that Cytokinetics Inc. has announced in their official press release published on 21 November 2017, that they will not be continuing work on tirasemtiv after disappointing results in the latest Phase 3 clinical trial. The trial, known under the acronym ‘VITALITY-ALS’, tested whether the drug has a beneficial effect on the breathing function and muscle strength of people with MND.

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