NEWS: Lyme in British Columbia–"More needs to be done"
In an Op-Ed column in the Vancouver Sun, two Lyme advocates lay out what's needed in the wake of a government report about Lyme disease. "The report remained secret for nearly a year. But astoundingly, within 24 hours of the information being made public last week, the B.C. government publicly pledged $2-million to establish a clinical and research study for Lyme disease and other complex chronic illnesses. This is a step in the right direction, but if the provincial government is serious about tackling Lyme disease, more needs to be done."
From the Vancouver Sun:
Lyme disease in B.C.: more needs to be done
Do you garden, hike, mow the lawn or walk in the park? If you do, you have just increased your risk of contracting Lyme disease – a serious bacterial infection. Lyme disease is one of the fastest growing infectious diseases in North America and ticks carrying this infection are found throughout British Columbia.
For over 10 years, a debate has raged in B.C. between Lyme disease patients and the provincial government regarding this complex illness.
Patient advocates have long argued the disease is under-diagnosed and under-reported due to doctor ignorance and faulty blood tests. The B.C. government has countered that blood tests are state-of-the art, doctors well informed, and Lyme disease is a rare and easily treated condition.
Now we have the answer to that debate.
Last year, the B.C. government did something remarkable: They quietly commissioned a report on Lyme disease. The confidential report, authored by Dr. Brian Schmidt, senior vice-president with provincial Health Services Authority, contained shocking information.
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