Covid vaccine priority for people with ME/CFS and the JCVI list – latest on our discussions

Dr Charles Shepherd, Hon Medical Adviser, ME Association

This is a post about Covid vaccine priority for people with ME/CFS and their inclusion in group 6 of the JCVI priority list.

As we explained yesterday on our Facebook page, we are still waiting for a response from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to two emails asking for confirmation that people with ME/CFS are included in group 6 of the JCVI Covid vaccine priority list.

We have made it clear to both the Chief Medical Officer (Professor Chris Whitty) and the JCVI that this is now a matter of urgency. 

This is because some people with ME/CFS are now being told by their doctors that they are in group 6. 

However, others are being told that ME/CFS is not included in group 6 and that they will therefore have to wait until they are invited by age.

This uncertainty and confusion is unacceptable and could be quickly solved by a statement from the JCVI.

In the meantime we have produced a letter (below) that people can send to their GP to explain why people with ME/CFS should be included in group 6.

The relevant information about group 6 can be found on pages 9 – 10 in Chapter 14a of what is known as the NHS ‘Green Book’.

“Today I got put down for category 6 after I emailed them the ME Association Vaccine Leaflet, with a quote from Dr Charles Shepherd regarding the Green Paper wording.
My GP surgery is now updating all other registered patients of the surgery who are diagnosed with ME/CFS. I had to fight for it taking two days of email exchange but it was worth it.”

A recent example of an email to us

Please note that a number of people have now made use of the supportive information that is referred to in this MEA letter and have been placed in the group 6 category as a result.

A LETTER FOR YOUR OWN GP

We have produced a letter that you can either email or post to your GP surgery. It’s available HERE as a downloadable Word document. Please modify it to suit your own circumstances.

The ME Association

Please support our vital work

We are a national charity working hard to make the UK a better place for people whose lives have been devastated by an often-misunderstood neurological disease.

If you would like to support our efforts and ensure we are able to inform, support, campaign, and invest in biomedical research, then please donate today.

Just click the image to the left or click here for one-off donations or to establish a regular payment. 

You can even establish your own fundraising event on JustGiving.

Or why not join the ME Association as a member and be part of our growing community? For a monthly (or annual) subscription you will also receive ME Essential – quite simply the best M.E. magazine!


ME Association Registered Charity Number 801279


ME CONNECT HELPLINE

0344 576 5326

Available every day of the week between these times: 10am - 12noon, 2pm - 4pm and 7pm - 9pm.

Calls cost the same as other standard landline numbers (starting 01 or 02). If you have a call package for your landline or mobile phone then calls will normally come out of your inclusive minutes.