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Designating May 12, 1998, and each succeeding year thereafter, as Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) Awareness Day in the Commonwealth.

Agreed to by the Senate, February 13, 1998
Agreed to by the House of Delegates, March 12, 1998

WHEREAS, chronic fatigue and immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS), commonly known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), is a serious and complex illness whose cause remains a mystery; and

WHEREAS, patients suffering from this chronic illness experience neurological, rheumatological and immunological problems and endure incapacitating fatigue and other debilitating symptoms that often last for months or years; and

WHEREAS, diagnosis of CFIDS is often difficult because there is currently no diagnostic test for the illness, which can resemble other disorders including mononucleosis, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, Lyme disease, post-polio syndrome and autoimmune diseases such as lupus; and

WHEREAS, as many as 500,000 adults and children in the United States are currently afflicted with CFIDS, and a countless number of other persons are indirectly impacted because of the effect of this devastating illness on the patient's occupational, social, educational, and personal activities; and

WHEREAS, although research efforts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, and other private research institutions have intensified, more studies are needed to determine the cause, mechanism, and effective treatment of this illness; and

WHEREAS, it is imperative that CFIDS patients receive the most effective and comprehensive medical care and support from health care professionals who have been educated and trained to understand the many facets of this health problem; and

WHEREAS, although there has been increased activity at the national, state, and local levels to increase public awareness and support for CFIDS sufferers, more needs to be done to conquer misconceptions about the illness and its devastating impact on the lives of patients and their families; and

WHEREAS, the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Association of Virginia has joined the CFIDS Association of America in observing May 12 as Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome Awareness Day to focus attention on this debilitating illness and efforts to find a cure; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Senate, the House of Delegates concurring, That the General Assembly designate May 12, 1998, and each succeeding year thereafter, as Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) Awareness Day in the Commonwealth; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the General Assembly call upon the citizens of the Commonwealth to learn about and support research, education, and other efforts to help the many sufferers battling CFIDS; and, be it

RESOLVED FINALLY, That the Clerk of the Senate transmit a copy of this resolution to the president of the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Association, in order that members of the association may be apprised of the sense of the General Assembly in this matter.