New Hampshire senate votes to establish commission to study Lyme and TBDs
By Kathy Fife, Lyme advocate from New Hampshire:
I’m pleased to share we had 100% support in the final senate vote on February 13.
HB 490 establishes a commission to study the role of clinical diagnosis and the limitations of serological diagnostic tests in determining the presence or absence of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases and available treatment protocols, and appropriate methods for educating physicians and the public about the inconclusive nature of prevailing test methods and available treatment alternatives.
Senator Jeb Bradley introduced the bill and amendment, saying “This bill is the product of many hours of discussion and hard work done by the medical community, stakeholders, and government agencies.
“The Health and Human Services Committee worked to balance the interest of these stakeholders while also producing legislation that would address a serious and growing threat.
“House Bill 490 will help to educate the public, facilitate progress, and provide a space where experts, advocates, and patients can work together to try and enhance the methods used to diagnose and test chronic Lyme and tick-borne disease[s].“
Senator and Chair Tom Sherman’s final comments included, “I would like to thank the medical society, as well as specific stakeholders who have persistently shown us that we need to meet a certain standard of addressing the issue of tick-borne illness in the State of New Hampshire. This bill will move forward with the commission that complements the work of the medical society.”
The bill now goes back to the House to approve the Senate’s amendments to the original bill. After House approval, it will then go to the governor’s desk for signature.
Three years of dedicated persistence!
I want to thank everyone who called, wrote, testified, and supported the efforts to keep this bill alive and never gave up.
Please take a moment to thank the Senate Health and Human Services Committee for listening to us and working to create a path towards better diagnosis, treatment, and care for chronically ill patients suffering with tick-borne diseases.
Senate HHS Committee 271-8631
Our work is just beginning.
Together, we will provide updated education and awareness, and create a safe place to reduce the needless suffering, and save lives.