Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


UC San Francisco Previously Published Works bannerUCSF

The Effect of the COVID-19 Pandemic on People with Parkinson's Disease.



The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on people with Parkinson's disease (PD) is poorly understood.


To rapidly identify areas of need and improve care in people with PD during the COVID-19 pandemic, we deployed a survey to assess COVID-19 symptoms and the pandemic's effect among those with and without COVID-19.


People with and without PD participating in the online study Fox Insight (FI) were invited to complete a survey between April 23 and May 23, 2020. Among people reporting COVID-19 diagnoses, we compared symptoms and outcomes in people with and without PD. Among people not reporting COVID-19, we assessed access to healthcare and services and PD symptoms.


7,209/9,762 active FI users responded (approximately 74% response rate), 5,429 people with PD and 1,452 without PD. COVID-19 diagnoses were reported by 51 people with and 26 without PD. Complications were more frequent in people with longer PD duration. People with PD and COVID-19 experienced new or worsening motor (63%) and nonmotor (75%) symptoms. People with PD not diagnosed with COVID-19 reported disrupted medical care (64%), exercise (21%), and social activities (57%), and worsened motor (43%) and non-motor (52%) symptoms. Disruptions were more common for those living alone, with lower income and non-White race.


The COVID-19 pandemic is associated with wide-ranging effects on people with PD, and certain groups may be at particular risk. FI provides a rapid, patient-centered means to assess these effects and identify needs that can be used to improve the health of people with PD.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View