Province asked to improve Lyme disease treatment, testing
Excerpted from Record.com ( Posted: 09/28/2011)
WATERLOO REGION — Persuaded by pleas for help from two sufferers of Lyme disease, regional councillors are urging the provincial health ministry to improve treatment and testing of this disease.
“We can’t get treatment,” in Ontario, Wendy Woodhall, founder of the Waterloo Region Lyme Disease Group, told councillors Tuesday.
“We just need help. We really need your help,” said Woodhall, who said she has to go to the United States to treat this disease that she has had for 13 years. She said she passed on the disease to her two children through breastfeeding.
“I have great fear, anger and frustration around this issue,” she said.
Woodhall said the testing methods used to detect this disease are outdated and inaccurate and doctors are not properly trained to diagnose and treat this debilitating disease.
Last August, council passed a motion urging Ontario’s chief medical officer of health to continue to stay abreast of the evolving science related to Lyme disease and to continue providing health units with current information pertaining to this disease.
On Tuesday, councillors passed a second motion asking the provincial government to improve the testing and treatment of Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is caused by a bite from an infected tick. It is a bacterial infection that, without antibiotics, can cause serious, chronic illness often mistaken for lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome or multiple sclerosis.
Overall, Ontario is seeing an increase in human cases of Lyme disease and that number is expected to increase with climate change as this disease is more prevalent in the northwestern states of the United States, a regional report said.