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ME|FM Society leads ME into 2023 Budget Recommendation

Updated: Aug 17, 2022


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To our ME community,

We continually work at advocacy. Advocacy takes time, commitment and strategy. Today, we are thrilled to share another win!


Every year, the BC Government hosts a province wide, public consultation to seek views on priorities for the next provincial budget. The ME|FM Society of BC has an active and multi-focused Advocacy Committee as well as our MLA and ME program filled with a team of incredible patient advocates. These two groups work in a strategic and coordinated approach to submit multiple entries to the consultation process.


Below details how ME was included in the report. Of specific note, this year our organization is directly named in the Final Report which is incredible recognition.


Under the Complex and Chronic Conditions Section, we are the first named organization:


“The ME|FM Society of BC outlined a number of issues related to myalgic encephalomyelitis, noting that physicians are unable to register a specific diagnosis because it falls under the generic diagnostic category of “Complex Chronic Disease” in BC. They explained that because of the lack of a diagnosis, access to research funding is not available and billing for doctors is more difficult. The organization highlighted the need for a medical diagnostic and billing code specific to the disease, complemented by funding for regionalized services to support patients.” (p. 59)


In the conclusion of the above section, again ME is noted strongly:


“Members were particularly struck by the need to provide improved care for myalgic encephalomyelitis, which they described as a horrible disease that is in dire need of increased awareness province wide.” (p. 67).


Thus, resulting in a clear, singular recommendation, and the first recommendation in the Health section:


“Recommendation #118. Prioritize and fund the development of myalgic encephalomyelitis-specific billing codes for BC clinicians and the development of continuing medical education credits, modules or incentives for BC physicians, medical students, and other medical professionals to attend training about myalgic encephalomyelitis.” (p.69, p. 111)


These recommendations now move forward to Cabinet for consideration and finalization of the Budget. The Society's ME Advocates will continue working to ensure these recommendations end up on the desks of MLAs so that they are at the forefront of discussions and therefore more likely to be included in the budget. It is our hope that the budget will include stable funding in support of this recommendation.


We gratefully acknowledge the efforts of our advocates and volunteers who spend their precious energy to continue to work together with us. Thank you for your commitment and we hope you also share this win with pride. Rest well, and let’s keep the momentum going!

To directly access the report from Budget 2023 Consultation Report of the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services, please visit: Budget-2023-Consultation-Report.pdf (leg.bc.ca)


If you are interested in becoming more involved with ME advocacy, please review some of the ways to become involved here: Get involved | MEFM SOCIETY OF BC. We have been growing steadily in the last few years and would love you to hear from you.


Hilary Robertson and Sue Khazaie

Co-Chairs, ME|FM Board of Directors


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