As one of our primary programs, we are laying the groundwork for a student fellowship for ten medical students to assist in top ME/CFS research labs in between their first and second years of medical school.
The summer between the first and second years of medical school is sometimes described as the last “free time” medical students have. However, most driven medical students will pursue research fellowships to set themselves up for success down the road. We plan to launch a highly competitive fellowship in neuro-immune medicine for students from across the nation or the world to study with leaders in the field such as the Open Medicine Institute, Simmaron Research, or the Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine.
According to a study by Leonard Jason of DePaul University, ME/CFS receives significantly less coverage in medical textbooks than diseases of lesser severity or less prevalence such as multiple sclerosis and Lyme disease. Beyond this, the information that is included in textbooks is often outdated or inaccurate. Therefore, in addition to giving students responsibility to handle complex and meaningful research, the fellowship would help fill gaping holes in their medical education.
ME/CFS is part of the spectrum of neuro-immune or neuroendocrine-immune diseases, which include but are not limited to fibromyalgia, Lyme, Gulf War Illness, multiple chemical sensitivities, autism, Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis. Patients often are co-morbid with one or more these conditions. Physicians who treat them often develop practices devoted to parsing out where a given patient falls in the spectrum of these diseases.
At the moment, our proposal calls for $50,000 in order to fund each fellow $5,000 for eight weeks (however, that may be subject to change). The money will be raised at fundraisers separate from the funding for this documentary film.
The proposed fellowship was announced in a column by Llewellyn King for the New York Times-Hearst Syndicate explaining our idea for the fellowship. It was published in a number of newspapers across the United States.
Click here to read the article.