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Answering your questions about our potential merger

September 09, 2021

Thank you so much to those that have shared the views, questions and concerns about the potential merger between Action for M.E. and The ME Trust. There is still time to let us know your thoughts via our short survey (this closes 9am on Wednesday 15 September, so we can collate and review all feedback before a Board decision about merging is taken on Thursday 16 September).

At our webinar next Tuesday (21 September), hosted by our CEO Sonya Chowdhury and ME Trust CEO Helen Winning, we will outline how we see our vision for providing healthcare services, should the merger go ahead. In response to survey respondents who have said they would like to know more, we want to respond to some of the questions raised now, and also reassure you that we are not reducing any services currently provided by either organisation.

We have lots more planning to do before the merger would actually take place in late November/early December, and have not yet worked out all the details. One important building block is for Action for M.E. to gain Care Quality Commission (CQC) registration. We will not proceed with a merger, should the Boards decide to proceed, until we have this in place.

The ME Trust has maintained an outstanding CQC rating and this provides confidence to people using their services. We are fully committed to maintaining these standards, which is why we want to ensure we have registration for Action for M.E. healthcare services before we actually merge.

The ME Trust’s registered Manager (a required role for CQC registration) will continue in that role for Action for M.E.

Helen Winning, their current CEO, will become Director of Healthcare Services to ensure that there is consistency of service and that the current holistic model provided by the ME Trust continues – this is provided by a GP, nurse physiotherapist, counsellors and multi-faith chaplains.

Action for M.E. does not support the use of graded exercise therapy (GET) and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) as treatments for M.E. and these will not be offered through the new healthcare services.

We will not be reducing any services that are currently provided by either organisation – the aim of the merger is to increase support, not reduce it.

We would like to reassure you that Action for M.E. will continue to provide its current Information, Support and Advocacy Service for people with M.E. of all ages, along with Family Support. We are committed to ensuring that these continue to grow to meet the increasing demand we are seeing from children and adults alongside their families. We will also continue to provide our InterAction membership magazine and all the other peer-support services including our friendly online forums, workshops and other activities.