Campaigners call on government to include Fibromyalgia on Long Term Illness List

Individuals living with fibromyalgia are spending their energy fighting the Irish health system as opposed to alleviating their condition, according to co-founder of Fibro Ireland.

The comments come in light of a conference held in Dublin last week whereby people living with fibromyalgia gathered to call on the government to recognise the condition as a long-term illness.

The condition is characterised by widespread pain and fatigue which is often a challenge to accurately diagnose.

Rachel Lynch is a co-founder and group facilitator of Fibro Ireland, an Irish support group to support those affected by fibromyalgia. Speaking to The College View, Lynch, who also lives with the condition said:

“Fibromyalgia not on the Long Term Illness List. It is also a very expensive illness to manage. If we were on the list, it would help to reduce the financial burden.

“A lot of the symptoms are similar to MS. We have had people who have had to do five or six rounds of social welfare, they have medical files as long as their arm and yet they are still being refused social welfare.”

She highlighted that the Long Term Illness List has not been updated in 40 years: “there’s no plans to change it, people with Chron’s disease and arthritis have tried to get on the list, and they are being told no. No one will tell us what the criteria is.”

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