Congress working on fighting Lyme disease

FILE - This is a March 2002 file photo of a deer tick under a microscope in the entomology lab at the University of Rhode Island in South Kingstown, R.I. Researchers focused on ticks and the debilitating diseases they spread say the heavy snow that blanketed the Northeast this winter was like a cozy quilt for baby blacklegged ticks that are now questing for blood as the weather warms up. (AP Photo/Victoria Arocho, File)

WASHINGTON, DC (WTNH) – Efforts are underway in Congress to combat Lyme disease. Legislation has been introduced by members including Senator Richard Blumenthal that aims to strengthen Lyme disease prevention, education, and research.

Senator Blumenthal says “now that the weather is warmer, people will be spending much more time outdoors. Unfortunately, more time outside – especially in wooded areas that are so common in my home state of Connecticut – also means more exposure tick-borne illnesses, like Lyme disease.

The Centers for Disease Control estimates nearly 300,000 Americans contract Lyme disease annually and 95% of the cases occur in the Northeast, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Virginia, New Jersey, Maryland and Wisconsin.

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