Lyme disease advocates to hold educational forum

Published: Nov. 11, 2013 at 6:28 PM EST
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WEST PRICE HILL, OH (FOX19) - The number of Lyme disease cases is on the rise in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Health officials report blacklegged ticks, which transmit Lyme disease, have been found in more than 50 Ohio counties. Other forms of ticks such as the American dog tick, which carries Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and the Lone star tick, which carries Ehrlichiosis, have also been found in Ohio.

John Donnally stopped in Cincinnati on Monday during a 4,000 mile cross-country tour. Donnally and The Tick-Borne Disease Alliance launched a nationwide campaign called "Bite Back For a Cure" to generate awareness and raise funds for Lyme disease research and diagnostics.

Donnally will join Cincinnati advocate Whitney Woodburn on Monday for a public educational forum. Woodburn has battled Lyme disease for years and founded a local support group called Lyme Education Awareness Prevention (LEAP).

The Ohio Department of Health's Zoonotic Disease Program, which tracks the spread of tick-borne diseases, lost its funding after state budget cuts in July. Advocates say it's made work on prevention of Lyme disease in Ohio much more challenging.

The educational forum is scheduled for 5-6 p.m. at the Refuge Coffee Bar, located at 5010 Glenway Avenue.

You can email Woodburn at for additional information about LEAP.

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