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Health & care professionals

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Introduction

Introduction

M.E. affects at least 250,000 children and adults in the UK and 35 million worldwide.

While scientists have not found biological abnormalities in M.E. that are specific enough to be used as a diagnostic test, abnormalities relating to the brain and the immune system clearly indicate (according to the US Centers for Disease Control) that this is “serious, chronic, complex, and systemic disease," as it was referred to in the Institute of Medicine's major 2015 report on M.E.

A number of guidelines exist for UK healthcare professionals regarding diagnosing and managing M.E. However, professionals and people with M.E. alike tell us they would like more information and support around the health and social care available.

Action for M.E.’s 2015 survey of 850 people with M.E. found a considerable gulf between the support needs of people with M.E. and social care provision, while Aviva’s 2013 Health of the Nation Index survey found that 25% of GPs noted an increase in M.E. patient numbers over the past year, while 39% found M.E. to be the most challenging condition for referral.

By offering evidence-based information and support via our website and printed resources, we hope to improve patient care for all those affected by M.E. in the UK. Please use the menu on the left to find the information you need.


Webinars and professional briefings

Our Inform M.E. Scotland project, funded by the Scottish Government in May 2017 for 12 months, resulted in three webinars and two professional briefings.

Our professional briefings for primary care professionals, and occupational therapists in Scotland offer an essential overview of M.E. and its impact, and key considerations for you and your patients.

Our webinars offer expert information and support for primary healthcare professionals on M.E. including diagnosis, symptom-management, co-morbidities and supporting effective self-management.

  • M.E./CFS management principles for health professionals by Fiona Wright, specialist M.E./CFS clinician and Occupational Therapist (OT) with North Bristol NHS Trust in January 2018. Health professionals can view this at Webinars for GPs.
  • Energy efficiency nursing: managing the effects of M.E./CFS by Keith Anderson, M.E./CFS Clinical Nurse Specialist with NHS Lothian, in January 2018. Health professionals can view this at Webinars for GPs.
  • Meeting the needs of people with M.E./CFS: essential facts and practical tips by pharmacist and Action for M.E. volunteer Emily Beardall, who also has M.E., in November 2017. A recording of the webinar, and its accompanying slides, are now available to view online. One GP who took part said it was an "excellent webinar debunking M.E. myths and providing practical advice on early management and signposting to support groups.