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Commons debate on M.E. confirmed for 24 January

January 17, 2019

Carol Monaghan MP, Member of the UK Parliament for Glasgow North West, has confirmed that the Backbench Business Committee has agreed to a debate on M.E. taking place next Thursday.

Following June's Westminster Hall debate on research and treatments for M.E., Ms Monaghan has been pushing for a Commons chamber debate, with support from Forward M.E., to keep moving M.E. up the parliamentary agenda. We are delighted she has been successful.

The motion for debate is:

“That this House calls on the Government to provide increased funding for biomedical research into the diagnosis and treatment of ME, supports the suspension of Graded Exercise Therapy and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy as means of treatment, supports updated training of GPs and medical professionals to ensure they are equipped with clear guidance on diagnosis of ME and appropriate management advice to reflect international consensus on best practice, and is concerned about the current trends of subjecting ME families to unjustified child protection procedures.”

Can you ask your MP to attend this debate, to be held on the afternoon of Thursday 24 January, most likely after 2pm (We will give an update on the start time for this debate as soon as possible)?

You could raise this with them on Twitter or Facebook, or use the template letter/email below, which links to our parliamentary briefing, to ask your MP to take part.


Parliamentary briefing

#MEAction, Action for M.E., ME Association and the ME Trust have produced a detailed parliamentary briefing for MPs, supported by Blue Ribbon for Awareness of ME, Centre for Welfare Reform, Forward ME, ME Research UK, Welsh Association of M.E. and CFS and Hope4ME & Fibro.

Originally produced for the June's Westminster Hall debate, the briefing remains relevant, highlighting key issues including education of health professionals, the ongoing review of the NICE guideline on M.E./CFS, children and young people with M.E. and the PACE trial.


Template letter/email

If you’re not sure who your MP is or how to contact them, use the Parliament website’s MP finder page to search for MPs by name, postcode, constituency.

Dear [your MP’s name]

As one of your constituents living with the serious, neurological condition Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.), I'm getting in touch to ask you to please take part in an important debate on M.E. on Thursday 24 January.

This matters to me because... [We suggest including a paragraph here telling your MP about your personal experience of M.E., and its impact on you and those close to you. The most effective way to engage MPs is to tell them about what matters most to you. We recommend keeping it to one paragraph as MPs receive a lot of letters and will only have a short time to read each one.]

The debate will take place in the Commons chamber on the afternoon of Thursday 24 January, most likely after 2pm.

To help you take part in this debate, a number of M.E. charities have collaborated to produce a comprehensive briefing on the key challenges facing people with M.E., and recommended actions.

  • People with M.E. - at least 250,000 adults and children in the UK - score lower overall [1] on health-related quality of life tests than most other chronic conditions, including prostate cancer, breast cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and schizophrenia.
  • M.E. affects more people than Parkinson's disease and Multiple Sclerosis combined, and costs the UK economy at least £3.3 billion [2] a year in healthcare costs, disability-related welfare payments, productivity losses and unpaid informal care.
  • Yet research into M.E. represents just 0.02% of all active grants [3] given by UK mainstream funding agencies. As a result, we still lack effective treatments for this life-stealing condition.

You can read and/or download the briefing on Action for M.E.'s website at www.actionforme.org.uk/debate [If you are emailing this, you could download the briefing and attach a copy to the email] and/or contact the charity for more information on policy@actionforme.org.uk or 0117 927 6622.

Please let me know if you are able to attend.

Best wishes and thank you

[Your name and postal address]


References

  1. https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0132421
  2. https://www.theoptimumhealthclinic.com/wp-content/...
  3. https://www.actionforme.org.uk/uploads/pdfs/mecfs-...