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Important development from the DWP regarding ME/CFS


Senior Member

Important development from the DWP regarding ME/CFS

In response to Professor Hooper's correspondence with the Department of Works and Pensions regarding their classification of ME/CFS and their failure to address the issues, the Countess of Mar contacted Lord Freud, Minister for Welfare Reform.

The Countess of Mar has received a reply which can be seen at the first link below.

This significant letter states: ... I can be clear that the DWP does not classify CFS/ME as a mental health disorder. Lord Freud also unreservedly apologised to Professor Hooper: ... let me apologise unreservedly for the handling of Professor Hoopers correspondence.


To view Professor Hooper's correspondence with the DWP please see here:


Senior Member
Best news I ever heard and for Prof Hooper who's document "Engaging with ME" sent me from Norway 12 years ago whilst all here telling me "nothing wrong" .......such things one does not forget. And now the evidence is increasingly out - why did no-one listen then when so very many were deemed only mentally wrong.


Senior Member
NYC (& RI)
Nice to see they replied and apoligized for the handling of the correspondence at least. i guess we have to wait for Prof. Hooper's take on the letter, eg was DWP right in saying that they do not say "CFS" is a psychiatric illness? Also Lord Freud is wrong that most "CFS" patients don't have neurological signs, unless of course he defines "CFS" by Oxford criteria (Fukuda 'cfs' of course has neuro signs; who knows with NICE definition as this piece of garbage is of course never used in studies)...


Off the fence
Put this DWP clarification alongside the one from Paul Burstow, Minister of Health, and we have a full house. It's about a third of the way down this page http://services.parliament.uk/hansard/Commons/bydate/20110912/writtenanswers/part019.html

Paul Burstow: The report of the CFS/ME Working Group to the chief medical officer, in January 2002, suggested that the composite term chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) be used as an umbrella term for this condition, or spectrum of disease.

This term is used by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence for their clinical guidelines, which also provide a definition of this condition for health professionals.

The Department classes CFS/ME as a long-term neurological disease of unknown cause.

Thankyou to all those that have been working to pin both the DWP and the DOH down on this issue, particularly Prof. Hooper.