The Ohio Valley is not immune from the national surge of tick-borne illnesses reported earlier this week by the CDC. and some officials say it’s possible to stop that trend with better funding.
The number of tick-related illnesses such as Lyme disease starting surging around 2012.
During that time, the number of cases in Kentucky and West Virginia more than doubled. Michael Shardien is a health policy specialist in Kentucky.
“It is a very big interest nationally at the CDC to try to do a lot more and come up with more funding, especially in the tick borne illness range the capacity for tick borne illness is high but they understand that vector borne disease seem to get quite a bit of money.”
Part of that, Shardien says, is the emerging nature of diseases like Zika caused by mosquitos. But, he says, the best thing people can do now is seek medical care if they suspect they have been infected.
“At the end of the day, if you don’t feel well, please reach about to your general care physician.”
He also urged those with tick-related illnesses to contact local or state public health offices.