A British psychiatrist should be stripped of an award, fellow scientists said last night, as one of the most heated debates in medical science continued.
Professor Simon Wessely, one of Britain’s foremost experts on ME, won the John Maddox Standing up for Science honour earlier this month. The prize was created by the journal Nature and the charitable trust Sense about Science. It was given to Professor Wessely for “courage” in speaking out about his studies into ME in the face a prolonged hate campaign and death threats. The Chinese science writer Fang Shi-min shared the award.
But critics protested against the decision last night. They said the professor’s work perpetuates the idea that myalgic encephalomyelitis, also known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), is a mental health problem, trivialising what they claim is a largely physical illness.
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Read the Countess of Mar’s letter to Prof. Wessley by clicking here.