Follow-up letter to NHSIA regarding correction of CFS classification in MHMDS


Posted 8th April 2004


Following the NHS Information Authority's (NHSIA) acceptance that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome has been classified incorrectly in the Mental Health Minimum Data Set (MHMDS), Dr Shepherd has written again to Mr Steven Harrison, Head of Corporate Affairs at the NHSIA, requesting that notification of the change be communicated in particular to the Chief Medical Officers of insurance companies, and that an announcement of the change be made on the NHSIA website.

6 April 2004

Your ref: SH/JKW

Mr Steven Harrison
Head of Corporate Affairs
NHS Information Authority
Aston Cross
Rocky Lane
Birmingham B6 5RQ

Dear Mr Harrison

Re: NHS Information Authority Classification of CFS

Following the resolution of our formal complaint about the inaccurate classification of CFS by the NHSIA in the Mental Health Minimum Data Set, The ME Association was pleased to learn from one of our members that you now intend to contact the Association of NHS Occupational Health Physicians and the NHS Pensions Agency to make them aware of the actions that have been taken.

With the inaccurate classification of both ME and CFS as mental disorders still causing frequent problems in relation to the refusal of insurance companies to agree to claims for sickness and disability policies, we believe it would be extremely helpful if you could also write to the Chief Medical Officers at these companies to ensure that they, too, are aware that the NHS Information Authority (and the Department of Health) fully accepts that ME and CFS are classified as neurological disorders under G93.3 in WHO ICD 10.

And it would also be helpful if the NHSIA website could make an announcement about this classification in the 'What's New' section on the homepage.

Yours sincerely

Dr Charles Shepherd
Medical Adviser

ME Association
4 Top Angel
Buckingham Industrial Park
MK18 1TH