Next CFSAC meeting, Tuesday 8 and Wednesday 9 November (US)

Next CFSAC meeting, Tuesday 8 and Wednesday 9 November (US)

Post #101 Shortlink:

Update @ October 19, 2011

An expanded version of the email I received from Mr Emmett Nixon on October 14 has now been posted on the CFSAC site at which includes the following:

“We will provide a video recording of the meeting on the CFSAC webpage,, which will be posted within one week of the meeting. This recording will be compliant with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and will include captions.”


Fall CFSAC meeting

The Federal Notice announcing dates for the Fall Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee (CFSAC) meeting was issued on October 5, 2011 and can be read here Federal Notice. At the time of publishing, an agenda for this meeting has yet to be released. I will update when the agenda has been published.

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The two day meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 8, 2011 and Wednesday, November 9, 2011 at a new venue – the Holiday Inn Capitol, Columbia Room, 550 C Street, SW., Washington, DC.

Since May 2009, the entire meeting proceedings have been streamed as live video with videocasts posted online a few days after the meeting has closed. For the November meeting, CFSAC has stated that only a live audio feed will be provided rather than real-time visuals and auto subtitling and that a high quality video will be provided at a later date.

The Federal Notice can be read below and beneath that, a clarification received on October 14, from Mr Emmett Nixon (HHS/OAHS), CFSAC Support Team.

Meeting of the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee

A Notice by the Health and Human Services Department on 10/05/2011


As stipulated by the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is hereby giving notice that the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee (CFSAC) will hold a meeting. The meeting will be open to the public.

Table of Contents



The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 8, 2011 and Wednesday, November 9, 2011. The meeting will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on November 8, 2011, and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on November 9, 2011.


Holiday Inn Capitol; Columbia Room; 550 C Street, SW., Washington, DC 20024; Hotel (202-479-4000).


Nancy C. Lee, MD; Designated Federal Officer, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee, Department of Health and Human Services; 200 Independence Avenue, SW., Hubert Humphrey Building, Room 712E; Washington, DC 20201. Please direct all inquiries to .


CFSAC was established on September 5, 2002. The Committee shall advise and make recommendations to the Secretary, through the Assistant Secretary for Health, on a broad range of topics including (1) The current state of knowledge and research and the relevant gaps in knowledge and research about the epidemiology, etiologies, biomarkers and risk factors relating to CFS, and identifying potential opportunities in these areas; (2) impact and implications of current and proposed diagnosis and treatment methods for CFS; (3) development and implementation of programs to inform the public, health care professionals, and the biomedical academic and research communities about CFS advances; and (4) partnering to improve the quality of life of CFS patients.

The agenda for this meeting is being developed. The agenda will be posted on the CFSAC Web site, , when it is finalized. The meeting will be recorded and archived for on-demand viewing through the CFSAC Web site. It will be available by audio on both days and the call-in numbers will be posted on the CFSAC Web site.

Public attendance at the meeting is open. Those attending the meeting will need to sign-in prior to entering the meeting room. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should notify the designated contact person at in advance.

Members of the public will have the opportunity to provide oral testimony on both days of the meeting; pre-registration for oral testimony is required. Individuals who wish to address the Committee during the public comment session must pre-register by Wednesday, October 26, 2011, via e-mail to Time slots for public comment will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and will be limited to five minutes per speaker; no exceptions will be made. Priority will be given to individuals who have not presented public comment at previous CFSAC meetings. Individuals registering for public comment should submit a copy of their oral testimony in advance to, prior to the close of business on Wednesday, October 26, 2011. If you wish to remain anonymous, please notify the CFSAC support team staff upon submission of your materials to

If you do not submit your written testimony by the close of business Wednesday, October 26, 2011, you may bring a copy to the meeting and present it to a CFSAC support team staff member. Your testimony will be included in a notebook available for viewing by the public on a table at the back of the meeting room.

Individuals who do not provide public comment at the meeting, but who wish to have printed material distributed to CFSAC members for review should submit, at a minimum, one copy of the material to the Designated Federal Officer at prior to close of business on Wednesday, October 26, 2011. Submitted documents should be limited to five typewritten pages. If you wish to remain anonymous, please notify the CFSAC support team staff upon submitting your materials to .

All testimony and printed material submitted for the meeting are part of the official meeting record and will be uploaded to the CFSAC Web site; this material will be made available for public inspection. Testimony and materials submitted should not include any sensitive personal information, such as a person’s social security number; date of birth; driver’s license number, State identification number or foreign country equivalent; passport number; financial account number; or credit or debit card number. Sensitive health information, such as medical records or other personal identifiable health information, or any non-public corporate or trade association information, such as trade secrets or other proprietary information also should be excluded from any materials submitted.

Dated: September 30, 2011.

Nancy C. Lee,

Designated Federal Officer, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee.

[FR Doc. 2011-25739 Filed 10-4-11; 8:45 am]

On October 14, I received the following clarifications from Mr Emmett Nixon, (HHS/OAHS) CFSAC Support Team, in response to queries first raised with Dr Nancy Lee, on October 11, concerning the arrangements for the recording and streaming of this meeting and the rationale behind the change of venue.

Mr Nixon’s response (October 14, 2011):

“We have heard concerns about changes we have made in the venue and the format of the upcoming 2011 November Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee meeting. Below we provide additional details about the meeting.

“We are working diligently to address major shifts in budget restrictions and protecting the personal safety of the public attending the meeting. We have moved the Fall CFSAC meeting to the Holiday Inn 550 C. St. SW, Columbia Room, Washington, D.C. 20024. This change was made because the HHS Humphrey Building Room 800 cannot accommodate more than 50 persons, and we are required to escort all persons attending the meeting due to security measures in place. The Columbia room at the Holiday inn holds a maximum of 300 people and provides an opportunity for the public to move freely about the hotel, rest in their rooms and use open hotel areas including the hotel cafeteria and restaurant. HHS will continue to provide a quiet area in the rear of the Columbia room to accommodate those needing a place to rest. HHS will not provide any medical services.

“There will be a live audio link to the two day meeting, which allows listeners to hear the entire meeting in real time. Due to budgetary considerations, we are unable to provide a live-video cast as previously arranged. We will provide a video recording of the meeting on the CFSAC webpage . This recording will provide a higher quality video at substantially lower cost.

“Time slots for public testimony will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and limited to five minutes per speaker. Priority will be given to individuals who have not given public testimony in previous meetings. Three hours have been allotted for public testimony. As before, we will accommodate persons who want to provide their testimony by telephone.

“The CFSAC Support Team”

On October 17, I wrote again to Mr Nixon, CC Dr Nancy Lee and Dr Chris Snell, Chair, CFSAC Committee, requesting that the decision not to provide live video streaming be reviewed, citing the issue of accessability to a public meeting by a patient group with disabilities, sensory processing difficulties and cognitive impairment and that a precedent had been set in May 2009 when video streaming was introduced for these meetings, which are viewed live not just in the US, but internationally.

In raising this issue with CFSAC Support Team, I have presented my concerns as an individual and have no connection with any other initiatives or approaches that might be being made to the Committee in respect of similar concerns over the arrangements for this November meeting.

Related material

Minutes of May 10-11 2011 CFSAC meeting (Discussion of coding of CFS for ICD-10-CM)


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