TOUCHED BY LYME: Lyme awareness in the time of coronavirus
I was scheduled to address the Redbud Chapter of the Audubon Society on March 19. My talk, “What birders need to know about ticks and Lyme disease,” has been postponed for now. A casualty of “social distancing,” due to COVID-19.
The 6th Annual Midcoast Lyme Disease Support and Education Conference, originally scheduled for April 11, in Augusta, Maine, has also been cancelled. No plans for rescheduling it in 2020.
Here’s a bit of good news: The Tick Talk Conference originally scheduled for April 4 in Carlisle, PA, will be held online. So, people who never could have made it to the in-person event will have a chance to hear those speakers, even while social distancing.
The link to watch the Tick Talk presentations will be available soon. Stay tuned for updates.
Focus on Lyme had two events scheduled for March 20-21 in Scottsdale, Arizona—a scientific conference and a patient forum. Those have been rescheduled for Oct. 2-3.
LymeDisease.org’s event calendar still lists several other programs in the coming months. I assume these may be cancelled, postponed or converted to online events as well—but we haven’t heard back from sponsoring organizations yet. We will update calendar information as it becomes available.
What about the larger issues of Lyme disease awareness—in a time that the whole world (rightfully so) is focused on a different pathogen—the novel coronavirus?
As I would have told those birders at the Audubon Society—the ticks aren’t going away just because we’re worried about COVID-19.
Since you can’t go to public places filled with other people, you might be inspired to walk alone out in nature to sooth your soul. Stay aware of your surroundings—and keep a proper “social distance” from ticks as well.
TOUCHED BY LYME is written by Dorothy Kupcha Leland, LymeDisease.org’s Vice-president and Director of Communications. She is co-author of When Your Child Has Lyme Disease: A Parent’s Survival Guide. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.