Agency Activities: Name Change
The CFIDS Association of America States Policy
Changing the Name "CFS"
The CFIDS Association of America's Board of Directors
committed to facilitating a change from the name "chronic fatigue syndrome" to a name that more accurately
describes the illness and leads to greater acceptance of the illness.
Chronic fatigue and immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS)
is used as
a transitional term to broaden the depiction of the disease beyond fatigue. The Board believes that this
term must ultimately be replaced, along with CFS.
The name change is an issue that each director feels
at a very personal level.
The Board recognizes the contributions of Roger Burns,
and many others in helping to bring this issue to national attention and commends them for their personal
Although diligent efforts have been made, the patient
been unable to reach clear consensus on an alternative name (other than CFIDS) that will be accepted and
widely used by the medical and scientific communities, legislators, and government agencies. Thus, a premature
change to a name not accepted by these institutions could come at a cost of lost recognition and credibility,
putting progress in education and public policy at risk.
We believe the key to a better name and greater legitimacy
continue aggressive pursuit of medical research or the identification of an individual of impeccable reputation
coming to the public attention either as a patient or a researcher, for whom the illness could be named.
While we cannot anticipate all circumstances which
may arise on this
volatile issue, we will actively collaborate with other individuals and groups who support a similar position
as we do. Ideally, this issue will unite the movement, although it is more realistic to expect that there
will be disagreement over the suitability of various alternative names, the timing of the name change
and the process by which the new name will come to be universally accepted and used. We respect such differences
Because this issue is so important at so many different
has such widespread implications for the future of the movement and the Association, the Board retains
authority to adopt and make known Association policy with respect to the name change.
Issued by The CFIDS Association of America's Board
of Directors on
March 25, 1998.
The CFIDS Association of America
and Encouragement for the CFIDS Community
PO Box 220398
Charlotte NC 28222-0398
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© 2000, The CFIDS Association of America, Inc.
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