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Published On: Sat, Jun 15th, 2013

Lyme disease bill passes Maine legislature, heads to Gov. LePage’s desk

A Lyme disease bill, which would require the Maine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to link to alternative treatments for the bacterial disease, passed both houses of the Maine legislature this week and now goes to the desk of Gov. Paul LePage.

 

''black-legged ticks'', Ixodes scapularis Image/CDC

”black-legged ticks”, Ixodes scapularis
Image/CDC

The bill, LD 597, directs the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention to include on its publicly accessible website information about different alternatives for the treatment of Lyme disease. The bill also requires the center to include information about treatment guidelines recommended by the Infectious Diseases Society of America, which represents physicians, scientists and other health care professionals who specialize in infectious diseases.

The Maine CDC currently only links to the IDSA website, an organization where many physicians go to for treatment guidelines, which don’t recognize chronic Lyme as a condition or support long-term antibiotic treatment for the disease.

The original bill sponsored by Rep. Sheryl Briggs, D-Mexico went a step further saying:

  • A negative result for a Lyme disease test does not necessarily mean that Lyme disease is not present and if symptoms continue, the patient should contact a health care provider and inquire about the appropriateness of retesting or additional treatment.

However, Briggs amended bill ended up requiring the health care provider to give a patient a copy of the results of a Lyme disease test.

The issue of Lyme treatment has been a constant cause of debate and disagreement between Lyme advocates and the medical establishment.

The advocacy website, MaineLyme.org says the IDSA  has developed the most often recommended guidelines for the treatment of Lyme disease, but many patients have found the limited recommendations were not successful in eradicating the symptoms of Lyme. Thus, ILADS, the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society, developed a broader set of guidelines that recommends treating the patient based on clinical presentation.

In 2012, a total of 1,111 probable and confirmed cases were reported to Maine CDC. This represents a state case rate of 83.7 cases per 100,000 persons.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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  1. Maine Gov. Paul LePage signs Lyme disease bill - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] a follow up to a story 10 days ago, the legislation, LD597, which passed the Maine legislature, was signed into law by Maine Governor […]

  2. Mission | Lyme Disease : Anita's Journey says:

    […] Lyme disease bill passes Maine legislature, heads to Gov. LePage’s desk (theglobaldispatch.com) […]

  3. Lyme disease bill passes Maine legislature, hea... says:

    […] CTV News Lyme disease bill passes Maine legislature, heads to Gov.  […]

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    […] To be treated for a tick-borne illnessNewsOK.comBangor Daily News -MyFox Washington DC -The Global Dispatchall 18 news […]

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