APPG on ME meeting, 1 April 2009

April 2, 2009

An inquiry into NHS service provision for people with ME/CFS was launched by Dr Des Turner MP at the All Party Parliamentary Group on ME yesterday (April 1).

The inquiry will evaluate the extent to which the NHS is providing care for people with the illness – particularly in primary and secondary care, and through specialist teams.

The inquiry will take written evidence from patients and professionals before inviting individuals and organisations to make oral presentations.

Written evidence will include the findings of questionnaires, to be sent to patients and NHS service providers.

Fuller details about the remit of the inquiry, its membership, timetable and ways to communicate with it are expected to be announced very shortly.

In attendance yesterday were MPs Dr Des Turner, Andrew Stunell and Peter Luff together with the secretariat provided by the ME Association and Action for ME, Dr Derek Pheby of the National ME Research Observatory, Kirstie Haywood, from the Royal College of Nursing Research Institute at Warwick University, and about a dozen individual people with ME and members of the public.

Part of the meeting was filmed by a crew from TV's “The Politics Show” who are following a 24-year-old student with ME, Samantha Brown. Both Ms Brown and reporter Max Cotton were at the meeting. It is expected that Max Cotton’s report will be screened shortly after Easter. The programme goes out on BBC1 on Sundays at 12 noon.

A fuller report of the meeting of yesterday’s APPG will appear in the May issue of the ME Association’s quarterly magazine, ME Essential.

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