I send my very best wishes to you all as you celebrate Dystonia Europe’s thirtieth anniversary! Many, many congratulations and thanks to the large number of people who have contributed so much to the successes of our organisation over those thirty years.
This must include not only our DE Board members, staff, advisers, and their families and friends who support them. We must also thank the many members of the medical profession and the pharmaceutical and medical device industries who all have given so much help over such a long time.
In January 1993, when we brought together delegates from the few national dystonia patient groups which existed at that time, we had no idea how the world of dystonia would be thirty years later! Then, we were dealing with an illness which had still to be properly defined by scientists, diagnosis was very difficult to find, and the first effective treatment had only very recently become available. Today, there is still a long way to go in all these aspects, but the position is immeasurably better than it was. We have much greater understanding of the condition and a much stronger working relationship with the medical professionals and other stakeholders.
After so many years of close involvement with EDF and DE, first as President and then Executive Director, I have retained a close interest over the past decade since I retired, and I look forward to reading about the successes which still lie ahead in the next ten years and beyond.
MBE Alistair Newton