UK House of Lords Written Questions and Answers: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – Question for Department for Work and Pensions, April 27, 2021
Asked by: Baroness Scott of Needham Market
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – To ask Her Majesty’s Government why the Department for Work and Pensions classifies ME/CFS as a musculoskeletal disease for the purposes of statistics and for the guidance and training of their health professionals, rather than as a neurological disease.
Answered by: Baroness Stedman-Scott
Assessment of entitlement to benefit does not depend on the condition itself, the underlying cause or how the condition is classified, but on the disabling effects of the condition(s) present.
The condition insight reports for Personal Independence Payment Health Professionals state that ME/CFS is classified as a neurological disorder; the guidance for CHDA Health Professionals who conduct Work Capability Assessments make no reference to the classification of ME/CFS.
The issue of classification for coding and statistical purposes has recently been brought to our attention. In light of this we are currently exploring moving ME/CFS from the musculoskeletal to neurological section for coding purposes.