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Why patients with ME are demanding justice

There is growing pressure on the UK establishment to finally accept that ME is a physical illness, not something that's 'all in the mind'. A recent article in The Independent reviewed the history of illness denial, which has been promoted by leading psychiatrists, private health insurers and politicians and puts further pressure on the interests which have maintained this false and damaging account.

You can read the full article at:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/long_reads/why-patients-me-demanding-justice-millions-missing-chronic-fatigue-illness-disease-a8133616.html

The article made reference to a number of important initiatives led by the Centre for Welfare Reform including:

  • The report In the Expectation of Recovery by George Faulkner which describes how the results of medical research were dangerously misreported.
  • Catherine Hale and Jenny Lyus, who both have ME, are also managing the Chronic Illness Inclusion Project which is exploring how a social movement can be developed to protect the rights of all people with chronic illnesses.
  • Claudia Gillberg, in A Troubling Truth, explores the challenges faced by people with ME, especially women, to retain their sense of citizenship in our current society.
  • Mo Stewart has published several articles explaining the negative influence of the US health insurance company Unum on UK government policy.

The detailed article by Nathalie Wright in The Independent has been published in the wake of the success of Jennifer Brea's powerful documentary - Unrest - which explores the reality of living with ME and the damage caused by its denial.

You can visit the film's website here:

https://www.unrest.film/time-for-unrest/

Dr Simon Duffy, Director of the Centre explored these issues in a recent Huffington Post blog where he wrote:

"This dangerous desire to solve a problem by evading the problem, has been made all the easier by the emergence of something called the biopsychosocial (BPS) model: this is an all encompassing framework for rethinking illness - making it part biological, part mental, part social. This may seem reasonable, but it easily becomes a way of blaming the victim and claiming it's all in the mind."