Simplified instructions for e-mailing President Obama’s science advisers Go to: http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ostp/contactus Where it says 'direct your comment'; choose PCAST Copy and paste the comment below: Please order HHS to adopt the Canadian Consensus Criteria and cancel its contract with the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to redefine ME/CFS On September 23, thirty-five of the leading ME/CFS researchers and clinicians wrote to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius calling for the Canadian Consensus Criteria (CCC) to be used as the sole case definition for ME/CFS. These experts also urged HHS to abandon its plans to contract with the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to use non-experts to create its own definition. On the same day, despite an outpouring of patient opposition, HHS announced that it was going forward with the IOM contract to develop its own clinical diagnostic criteria for ME/CFS, instead of adopting the 2003 Canadian Consensus Criteria (CCC) created and endorsed by ME/CFS experts. Regarding the IOM contract, the thirty-five experts stated, “Since the expert ME/CFS scientific and medical community hads developed and adopted a case definition for research and clinical purposes, this effort (the IOM study) is unnecessary and would waste scarce taxpayer funds that would be much better directed toward funding research on the disease. Worse, this effort threatens to move ME/CFS science backward by engaging non-experts in the development of a case definition for a complex disease about which they are not knowledgeable." The use of non-experts is especially concerning because, thanks to the bad definitions that HHS has promoted, the disease is so poorly understood that the medical community at large believes the disease is either not real or is a form of depression or deconditioning. ME/CFS is not deconditioning or depression. It is a devastating disease that causes neurological and immunological dysfunction and leaves patients bedridden, housebound and unable to work. ME/CFS costs the U.S. economy an estimated $17-23 billion dollars in lost productivity and direct medical costs. Given the overwhelming opposition to HHS' plans by both patients and experts, I am asking you to do whatever you can to get HHS to follow the lead of ME/CFS disease experts. HHS must cancel the contract with IOM. HHS must adopt the Canadian Concensus Criteria.