ME in Parliament: May 2008

Thanks to Dr. Marc-Alexander Fluks for compilation

Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 6, 2008
URL: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080506/text/80506w0018.htm

[Written Answers]

Incapacity Benefits: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Dr. Gibson

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the impact of (a) the Welfare Reform Act 2007 and (b) new guidance on the disability living allowance on the granting of benefits to people with myalgic encephalopathy. [201838]

Mr. Timms

The Welfare Reform Act 2007 contains provision for the creation of the new employment and support allowance. This will be supported by the new work capability assessment.

The work capability assessment will be a fair, robust and accurate assessment of limited capability for work which takes account of all conditions, including those that are long term and that fluctuate such as myalgic encephalopathy.

Employment and support allowance will replace incapacity benefits for new claimants from October 2008. No assessment of its impact can be made yet.

Updated medical guidance on myalgic encephalopathy for disability living allowance decision makers was published in July 2007. No assessment has been made of the impact of the guidance on entitlement to disability living allowance for people with myalgic encephalopathy.

(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright

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Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 7, 2008

URL: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080507/text/80507w0028.htm   

[Written Answers]

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Dr. Gibson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the effects on services for children and young people with myalgic encephalopathy of the closure of specialist units in (a) Leeds, (b) the Lister hospital, Stevenage and (c) St. Thomas’s hospital, London; and if he will make a statement. [201831]

Ann Keen

We have made no assessment of the impact on services for children and young people by the closure of these specialist units. Local health bodies have a duty to commission health and social care services to meet the needs of their local population, including those living with chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis.
(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright 

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Ed: In November 2006, the GSRME issued a press release to launch the Report of the GSRME (“The Gibson Report”):

Extract from GRSME Media Release, embargoed until 10pm Sunday 26th November 2006

“NICE has just finished consulting on their draft guidelines for treating CFS/ME. These guidelines have been widely criticised by patient groups and by the APPG on ME. Chair Des Turner described them in a meeting last week as ‘not fit for man nor beast’ Dr Ian Gibson MP of the Inquiry described them as ‘useless’.

On 7 May 2008, Dr. Gibson tabled a written question:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to (a) ensure implementation of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s guidelines on the treatment of myalgic encephalopathy (ME) published in August 2007.”

On whose behalf has Dr Gibson raised this question?

Has Dr Gibson done a volte face and does he now consider the NICE CFS/ME Guidelines to be fit for purpose and suitable for implementation?  Is Dr Gibson now endorsing the NICE CFS/ME Guidelines?

Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 7, 2008

URL: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080507/text/80507w0028.htm 

[Written Answers]

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Dr. Gibson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to (a) ensure implementation of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s guidelines on the treatment of myalgic encephalopathy (ME) published in August 2007, (b) reduce the time taken to diagnose ME, (c) increase the allocation of funds for research into ME and the delivery of effective care and treatment, (d) reduce inconsistencies in levels of ME care across primary care trusts and (e) assess the availability of services to (i) children and (ii) adults with ME. [201832]

Ann Keen

Health professionals are expected to use their clinical judgement taking into account best practice and existing clinical guidelines, including those produced by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), to provide the most appropriate treatment for the individual living with chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME).

Diagnosis for CFS/ME can be prolonged as there is no specific test for this condition and other diseases with similar symptoms must be ruled out before a diagnosis can be made. The NICE guidance provides a list of medical tests that should be used to rule out other conditions.

The Medical Research Council is responsible for allocating funding for medical research, and does not ring-fence funding for specific conditions. Funding for individual research proposals is based on an assessment of the quality of each proposal by an independent panel. Local health bodies are responsible for commissioning health and social care services to meet the needs of their local population living with CFS/ME.

(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright

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Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 7, 2008

URL: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080507/text/80507w0028.htm 

[Written Answers]

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Mike Penning

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what steps his Department is taking to ensure primary care trusts meet the recommendations of the new guidelines on myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome produced in August 2007 by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence; [202244] (2) what steps his Department is taking to reduce the time taken to diagnose myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome. [202245]

Ann Keen

Health professionals are expected to use their clinical judgment taking into account best practice and existing clinical guidelines, including those produced by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), to provide the most appropriate treatment for the individual living with chronic  fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME).

Diagnosis for CFS/ME can be prolonged as there is no specific test for this condition and other diseases with similar symptoms must be ruled out before a diagnosis can be made. The NICE guidance provides a list of medical tests that should be used to rule out other conditions.

(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright

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Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 8, 2008

URL:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080508/text/80508w0028.htm

[Written Answers]

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: Health Services

Dr. Desmond Turner

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department plans to take to ensure that the recommendations for research into myalgic encephalomyelitis/ chronic fatigue syndrome in the new National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidelines are met, with particular reference to the (a) causes of the illness, (b) effectiveness of intervention strategies and (c) efficient ways to deliver domiciliary care for people who are severely affected. [203962]

Dawn Primarolo

Research recommendations made in National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines are considered on behalf of the Department by the National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment programme (HTA). The director of the HTA programme meets annually with NICE for this purpose. The next of these joint meetings will be held in September.

(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright

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Source: UK House of Commons
Date: May 9, 2008

URL:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080509/text/80509w0015.htm

[Written Answers]

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Mr. Llwyd

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department plans to take to ensure that recommendations on research into myalgic encephalomyelitis and chronic fatigue syndrome, such as those outlined in the guidelines recently issued by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, are met, with particular regard to (a) the cause of the illness, (b) the effectiveness of current intervention strategies and (c) identification of efficient ways to deliver domiciliary care for those who are severely affected. [203520]

Dawn Primarolo

I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave the hon. Member for Sutton and Cheam (Mr. Burstow) on 29 April 2008, Official Report, column 252W.

(c) 2008 Parliamentary copyright

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Monday 2 June 2008 at 2.30pm: Oral Question in the House of Lords

Countess of Mar to ask Her Majesty’s Government whether the current NHS Review will include consideration of chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic  encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) as a long-term neurological condition.

 

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