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Ontario woman battling Lyme disease forced to seek treatment in U.S.

Campers stand at the edge of the water at sunset watching the stars come out, with the CanLyme logo floating in the foreground.

SIMCOE, Ont. — A Simcoe woman living with Lyme disease is heading to the U.S. for help.

Caley Barber will have a friend drive her to Plattsburgh, N.Y., to meet a doctor and hopefully start the long-term course of antibiotics she needs to get better — at her own expense.

Barber’s predicament is common for Canadians who have the disease, say advocates pushing for change to the treatment and testing of Lyme disease.

If it is caught early, the bacteria usually can be killed off with antibiotics. But if it isn’t, the disease sets in for the long run. Complications arise because testing in Ontario doesn’t pick it up in its later stages and the infected often get diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, or in Barber’s case Parkinson’s.

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  1. I know I have a friend in Simcoe County, Ontario region (Barrie/Angus Ontario region) that is suffering bad with it. Long time before she was diagnosed and than after diagnosed….nothing!!!! NO DOCTORS? That makes absolutely no sense! WHY, we know the treatments, the USA is successful at it too. So why no treatment here? I read your statement, but it still isn’t clear. Can you put that in a clear way for me, not a political way…wish I could understand what was written but can’t.

  2. Update with sad news I heard tonight that Calay Barber passed away this week at the age of 45. This comes just a week ahead – as I and others are trying to start a Lyme Support group for our area on Lake Erie – Port Dover. Just last March we lost a 44 year old woman as well. Rest In Peace Calay xo

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