Statement by LDA’s chair, Stella Huyshe-Shires – 10 September 2011
Text for those who would rather read:
We are all disappointed that the HPA will not be providing the expected speaker for our conference this coming week. I’m afraid that at Lyme Disease Action we find it inexplicable that an organisation which is responsible for protecting the nation’s health refuses to engage in an educational opportunity.
A glance at the HPA’s website will tell you that “The Health Protection Agency recognises that good stakeholder relationships are critical to the success of the Agency. These relationships do not just happen but require careful management … “ Well, we couldn’t have put it better ourselves!
However, just because the HPA’s careful management of stakeholders has slipped doesn’t mean that we as patients should be diverted from our path of documenting the uncertainties that do exist in the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease and working towards truly evidence based guidelines. We do not want to get drawn into a slanging match and risk widening even further what already appears to be a gulf.
No-one in their right minds thinks that refusing to engage in dialogue is sensible. Any doctor hearing about this situation is likely to be a bit shaken in their belief that the HPA knows what it is doing.
Have they shot themselves in the foot? Very probably, but I hope it won’t make them withdraw further because we at Lyme Disease Action do not want to work against them.
Meanwhile, the LDA conference on Saturday 17th in Bristol will be even more interesting as a result. Come and take part! With or without the HPA we are moving things forward.