By Rob Houle
Niagara Region doesn’t take chances when it comes to ticks.
If a resident brings in a tick for testing to a public health office and it is subsequently identified as the potentially Lyme-carrying kind, the resident is notified as quickly as possible.
Peter Jekel, the Region’s manager of environmental health, said although very few backlegged ticks test positive for Lyme bacteria, public health is quick to act.
“If we identify a tick that’s found on a person as a backlegged tick, one of our public health nurses will give that person a call,” Jekel said. “We don’t even wait for the results (of a Lyme test.)”
It is up to that individual to consult a physician, Jekel said. The doctor can follow up with the public health department to see if the tick tested positive for the Lyme bacteria. Health Canada says Lyme disease can easily be treated with antibiotics within two to four weeks of infection.