ME Association fully supports legal challenge to the NICE Guideline on ME/CFS

February 10, 2009

The ME Association will be fully supporting the two people with ME – Douglas Fraser and Kevin Short – who have succeeded in achieving a Judicial Review into the 2007 NICE Guideline on ME/CFS. 

The Judicial Review, which could result in the NICE guideline being withdrawn, is taking place at the Royal Courts of Justice in The Strand, London on 11 and 12 February.

The four key reasons why the MEA believes the NICE guideline on diagnosis and management of ME/CFS is unfit for purpose are as follows:

  • NICE has broadened the diagnostic criteria as to what can be diagnosed as ME/CFS. 
  • NICE advocates a "two sizes fits all" approach to management in that far too much emphasis is being placed on the role of cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and graded exercise therapy (GET) – treatments that significant numbers of people with ME/CFS consistently report to be either ineffective or even harmful in the case of graded exercise.
  • NICE has failed to provide adequate information on symptomatic relief, particularly in the area of pain control.
  • NICE has failed to properly address, or not addressed at all, many of the important non-drug aspects of management such as benefit provision; diet and nutrition; and occupational health.
The MEA believes that our decision to classify the ME/CFS guideline as ‘unfit for purpose' has widespread support from our membership.  In an on-line survey of public opinion carried out via the MEA website in December, 91% of those who took part supported the MEA position, only 6% did not.
The current online poll on NHS service provision also suggests that following implementation of the NICE guideline in August 2007,  people with ME/CFS do not believe that they are receiving the sort of management advice that should be available from both general practice and hospital based services.  Current ratings for NHS service provision being: 47% – very poor; 22% – poor; 15% – no longer use the NHS; 8% – average;  6% – good and 2% – excellent.
More information on the practicalities of attending the Judicial Review can be found by clicking HERE.


Note to Editors:

For more details about the ME Association's position, please contact:

Tony Britton, Publicity Manager, The ME Association

Tel: 01406 370293 Mob: 07880 502927  Email


Shopping Cart