Parkinson's disease (PD) afflicts more than 1,000,000 people in the United States and over 50,000 veterans obtain their medical care for PD within the Veterans Health Care System. In an effort to improve care for this growing population of veterans suffering from PD, the Veteran's Health Administration established 6 Parkinson's disease Research, Education, and Clinical Centers (PADRECC) based on merit. These 6 centers offer state of the art diagnosis and treatment of PD and other movement disorders. The PADRECC also provide education for both the professional community and patients not only at the 6 sites, but also throughout the VA system through the development of a national consortium. Improving veterans' health care through research is also a priority for the PADRECC. All 6 PADRECC are participating in the largest surgical trial for the treatment of PD ever performed. Heath service researchers have already identified quality of care indicators that are now being used to evaluate care for veterans with PD. Basic researchers at the PADRECC are studying the cause of PD and are developing new therapies including stem cells. The development of the PADRECC has created an important infrastructure and attracted expertise into the VA system. They have already made great improvements in caring for veterans with PD and promises to push the field further with their research efforts.