WASHINGTON, Nov. 1, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Center for Lyme Action today applauded the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee for advancing critical legislation to improve prevention, early detection and treatment of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases.
The HELP Committee agreed unanimously by voice vote to advance the Kay Hagan TICK Act, S. 1657, to the Senate floor for full Senate consideration.
"Today's vote represents a historic advance in the fight against Lyme and other tick-borne diseases," said Bonnie Crater, co-founder of the Center for Lyme Action. "I urge the full Senate to take up and pass the Kay Hagan TICK Act as soon as possible so that we can begin to reverse the spread of tick-borne diseases and provide better treatment options for patients already suffering from this terrible threat to public health."
Lyme disease is a growing public health threat in the United States. But research and development to improve early diagnostic testing and treatment options are significantly underfunded. With over 400,000 new cases reported last year – a four-fold increase since 1991 – the spread of Lyme is escalating at an alarming rate. Lyme disease costs America's healthcare system more than $75 billion each year in direct medical costs and indirect costs such as loss of work.
The bipartisan Kay Hagan TICK Act, introduced by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Tina Smith (D-MN), would increase federal funding for research and provide communities and states with additional resources for prevention, early detection, and treatment of tick-borne diseases.
On October 30, Center for Lyme Action along with 130 other groups sent the attached letter to Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) in support of the Kay Hagan TICK Act.
Kay Hagan TICK Act is cosponsored by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John Boozman (R-AR), Senator Mike Braun (R-IN), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Angus King (I-ME), Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT).
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SOURCE Center for Lyme Action