European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations

From the desk of Jeanne Hambleton

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) adopt written declaration 69/2008 on fibromyalgia initiated by five deputies and the European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations (ENFA).

Brussels (16.12.2008) – Written Declaration 69/2008 on fibromyalgia has been a success in the European Parliament by finding the necessary quorum of signatories of 393 deputies giving their support. The Written Declaration was initiated by five key MEPs active on health at the European Parliament: Mr. Adamou, Ms. Brepoels, Ms. Dičkuté, Mr. Popa and Ms. Sinnott. These MEPs decided to launch the declaration during the celebratory meeting of the 1st European Fibromyalgia Awareness Day in May 2008, organized by ENFA

The Written Declaration is calling on the European Union to recognize fibromyalgia in Europe as a disease, as WHO did in 1992. It is estimated that 14 million people in Europe suffer from fibromyalgia and the condition is more prevalent with women (87% of total prevalence).

Fibromyalgia is a complex disease with a variety of symptoms in addition to the defining symptom – chronic widespread pain. These include fatigue, non-restorative sleep, morning stiffness, irritable bowel and bladder, restless legs, depression, anxiety and cognitive dysfunction often referred to as “fibro fog.” All of these symptoms cause serious limitations in patients’ ability to perform ordinary daily chores and work and severely affect their quality of life. Some scientists believe that there is an abnormality in how the body responds to pain, and particularly a heightened sensitivity to stimuli.

Fibromyalgia imposes large economic burdens on society as well as on affected individuals. A study shows that an average patient in Europe consults up to 7 physicians and takes multiple medications over 5-7 years before receiving the correct diagnosis. The debilitating symptoms often result in lost work days, lost income and disability payments. Research in the UK has shown that diagnosis and positive management of Fibromyalgia reduce healthcare cost by avoiding unnecessary investigations and consultations

Thus, the European Parliament is calling through this declaration, for the European Commission and the Council, to help raise awareness of the condition and facilitate access to information for health professionals and patients, by supporting European and national awareness campaigns; to encourage Member States to improve access to diagnosis and treatment; to facilitate research on fibromyalgia through the work programmes of the EU 7th Framework Programme for Research and future research programmes; and finally to facilitate the development of programmes for collecting data on fibromyalgia.

Educating healthcare professionals, patients and the public to promote better understanding and management of Fibromyalgia will benefit patients, healthcare providers and the society.
A Written Declaration is a text of up to 200 words on a matter falling within the European Union’s sphere of activities. MEPs can use them in order to launch or relaunch a debate on a subject that comes within the EU’s remit. At the end of the lapsing date (3 months after its launch on 1 September for the declaration 69/2008) the declaration is forwarded to the institutions named in the text, together with the names of the signatories.

Contact:
European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations (ENFA)
Mr. Robert Boelhouwer
President of ENFA
contact@enfa-europe.eu
www.enfa-europe.eu

About ENFA
ENFA is a network of patient association and support groups working in close consultation with the national association in the relevant country. Our joint missions are to conquer the myths and misunderstandings around Fibromyalgia. The network will help collectively push forward the boundaries which currently exist in understanding, experiencing and treatment of Fibromyalgia. Our main goal is to see fibromyalgia receiving the recognition it deserves across Europe as an illness in its own right.

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About FMS Global News

Folllowing Rick Usher's death in December 2008, at his request in September of that year, I had agreed, as his principal contributor and an experienced journalist, to run the FMS Global News service due to his heavy commitments to music and raising research funds through this avenue. Following his sad and sudden death I hope to continue his work as he would have wished.
This entry was posted in Awareness, CBS News, European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations, Fibrohugs, Fibrohugs News, Fibromyalgia, Fibromyalgia Blogs, Fibromyalgia News, Fibromyalgia News Belgium, Fibromyalgia News Denmark, Fibromyalgia News Deutschland, Fibromyalgia News France, Fibromyalgia News Italy, Fibromyalgia News Jerusalem, Fibromyalgia News Korea, Fibromyalgia News Spain, Fibromyalgia News UK, Fibromyalgia Press Releases, FM, FMS, FMS Global News, Global News, Health, Health Canada, Health Care, Jeanne Hambleton, Journalist UK, London UK, London UK Feed, Mexico, Mexico City, News, News Belgium, News Canada, News Denmark, News France, News Ireland, News Israel, News Italy, News Jerusalem, News Norway, News Scotland, News Southeast Asia, News Spain, News Sweden, News Turkey, News UK, Ontario, Politics, RSS, RSS Feeds, Spain, Stockholm, Support Groups, Surrey and Sussex, Swedish, Switzerland, Tenderpoints, US, USA, World, World News, World Wide, Worldwide. Bookmark the permalink.

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