March 2020
Important Announcement: The Lyme Disease Association (LDA) and Columbia University have jointly announced our thoughtful but reluctant decision to postpone our annual fall 2020 CME Lyme & Other Tick-Borne Diseases Conference due to the worldwide COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) health emergency . The safety and well-being of everyone are our primary concerns, and we hope everyone remains safe.
See you next year and thanks for your support!

LDA President, Pat Smith;
Columbia University, Brian A. Fallon, MD

See LDA and Columbia University's past scientific conferences .
The Lyme Disease Association Inc. (LDA) feels it is imperative that the Lyme Community and the public understand the continued resistance by government agencies to provide information pertaining to chronic Lyme disease on their websites and in their programs despite Lyme disease being around 45 years. LDA has provided a number of video clips from the 12th HHS Tick-Borne Disease Working Group (TBDWG) meeting in Philadelphia portraying that resistance. Decades long advocate, LDA President, Pat Smith, the WG patient rep, rebuts these entrenched positions
Watch clips of the Working Group (WG) Discussion on Training, Education, Access to Care, and Reimbursement Subcommittee Recommendations.

Watch clips of Sam Donta, MD's discussions of Pathogenesis and Physiology of Lyme Disease Subcommittee Recommendations, Clinical Aspects of Lyme Disease Subcommittee Recommendations, and more.

Watch clips of public comments from nine Lyme disease advocates and patients who either called in or were present at the meeting.Their input was invaluable and helped WG members appreciate issues of concern throughout the country.
Robert, Bransfield, MD, is lead author on the just-published A Clinical Diagnostic System for Late-Stage Neuropsychiatric Lyme Borreliosis Based upon an Analysis of 100 Patients in the peer-reviewed scientific journal  Healthcare

The published study identifies that many late-stage chronic Lyme disease clinical findings are neuropsychiatric and therefore a complete clinical assessment is critical in diagnosis, especially since the reliability of laboratory testing is controversial. Read more.
Robert C. Bransfield, MD, DLFAPA is a member of the LDA Scientific & Professional Advisory Board
Click here to read the peer-reviewed article.
This illustration, created at the CDC, reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.
(Photo Credit: Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAMS)
LDA has provided a compilation of material on Covid-19 consolidated by Dr. Robert Bransfield, MD, that the LDA has permission to post.

Dr. Bransfield has divided the material into nine sections and on LDA's website you'll find each with a number of different links to valuable content.

Dr. Bransfield thanks contributors to this project including members of ILADS, Microbes and Mental Illness listserv, and Psychopharmacology listserv.

Click here to read Dr. Bransfield's compilation of material
In February 2020, the Lyme Disease Association, Inc. (LDA)  asked you to contact your Congress Member   and request that he/she sign on to two important letters from the US House Lyme Disease Caucus. The language in the bipartisan letters was developed with input from the LDA and other TBD advocates.

Final letters were sent by House Lyme Caucus Co-Chairs Rep. Chris Smith and Rep. Collin Peterson to the Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education and Related Agencies, and the Subcommittee on Defense the week of March 16th. 
The letters requested fund increases and provided directions for the monies forLabor HHS Appropriations and the DoD CDMRP appropriations for FY2021.

 Read more and view the two letters.

Visit Chris Smith's Leadership on Lyme web page .
The FY20 Tick-Borne Disease Research Program (TBDRP) Program Announcements managed by the Department of Defense (DOD) office of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) are now posted to the  grants.gov (search grants by CFDA Number 12.420) and on the  CDMRP website .

FY20 funding opportunities include the following:

Pre-Applications are due May 27, 2020 and invited Applications due August 27, 2020.
Visit LDA's website for more information and how to apply.
The 12th meeting of the Tick-Borne Disease Working Group (TBDWG) took place March 3-4, 2020, at The College of Physicians of Philadelphia in Philadelphia, PA. A summary of the in-person public meetings are on the LDA website .

Though the TBDWG worked through many of the subcommittee recommendations with good consensus, discussions regarding those presented by LDA President, Pat Smith, for “Training, Education, Access to Care and Reimbursement” became heated as Pat asked the Federal agency representatives for agreement on website disclosures to increase public awareness for the two divergent diagnostic and treatment approaches reflected in guidelines for Lyme disease.  Read more .
LDA President, Pat Smith, at 12th meeting of the TBDWG, Philadelphia, PA
LymeDisease.org provides a video clip of Pat Smith’s continued strong advocacy for patient needs in Dorothy Leland’s March 5th, Touched by Lyme blog.

Visit the HHS-TBDWG web page .
Fifteen-year-old Olivia Goodreau, founder of the Lyme advocacy group, LivLyme Foundation, has introduced the very first emoji icons to feature ticks called “ Tickmojis ” as a way to educate and spread awareness about TBD. Goodreau’s tick emojis illustrate ten of the most common tick species found in North America and were verified by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Read more .
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