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Congressman Keating Secures Funding for Tick Borne Diseases

Filed in Environment, Health and Wellness, NEWS HEADLINES by on July 14, 2017 0 Comments • views: 545

WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 14, 2017) – Congressman William Keating has secured funding to support research and testing for tick-borne diseases. Congressman Keating’s amendment to procure funds for tick-borne illnesses was included in the National Defense Authorization Act, which passed the US House of Representatives today.

The Keating amendment specifically gives the Department of Defense (DOD) the authority to partner with medical researchers and universities to test for all tick-borne diseases.

Currently, the Army Public Health Center’s testing program are limited to six tick-borne diseases. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention have identified sixteen different tick-borne diseases, some of which can be fatal. The Keating amendment expands DOD testing to all known tick-borne diseases.

The Keating amendment also allows the DOD to grant money to universities to conduct tick testing at a lower cost to the public.

In his speech on the House floor in support of his amendment, Congressman Keating said:

“This issue [tick-borne disease] is of particular concern in my region.  According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, my district includes the counties with the five highest rates of Lyme disease in the Commonwealth, including Barnstable County, home of Joint Base Cape Cod. ”

“We are fortunate to have experts already working to combat the rise in tick-borne disease. My amendment would facilitate collaboration among these experts and DOD to test more tick samples for more diseases, meet the growing needs of our military, and ultimately lead to better health outcomes.”

The Keating Amendment is the Congressman’s latest effort to combat the rise in tick-borne illnesses.  Last month, he authored and introduced H.R. 2894, the Tick-Borne Disease Prevention Act.  This legislation would direct the CDC to public two sets of materials specific to Lyme disease and tick-borne illnesses. The first would update prevention and treatment procedures for both providers and the public.  The second includes training materials for healthcare providers.

Watch: Congressman Keating’s 7/13 speech on the House floor. Footage courtesy CSPAN.


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