Ahead of what is projected to be one of the worst summers for tick-borne diseases in years in Westchester and Rockland Counties, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer today urged, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to double-down on efforts to fully implement new laws, passed by Congress last year, that will significantly increase research, vaccine development and treatment strategies to help stamp out tick-borne diseases like Lyme disease. Schumer said any delay in federal action will allow newly emerging disease like Powassan, which is even deadlier than Lyme disease, to impact already highly vulnerable areas like Westchester, Rockland and the entire Hudson Valley region.
“As Americans spend more and more time enjoying the outdoors, each year, we need more research to prevent and treat Lyme and other tick-borne diseases,” said Dr. Robert W. Amler, Dean of the School of Health Sciences and Practice and Institute of Public Health, Professor of Public Health, Pediatrics, and Environmental Health Science at New York Medical College in Valhalla. “And much of that important work is done right here, at New York Medical College.”
“There are 5 deer tick transmitted infections in our geographic area, but many people are only aware of Lyme disease. All require more research but the rapid emergence of babesiosis in particular in this region, along with the potential severity of this illness, should certainly attract more awareness and research funding,” said Dr. Gary P. Wormser, Chief, Division of Infectious Diseases, Vice Chairman, Department of Medicine, Professor of Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology, and Pharmacology at New York Medical College in Valhalla.
NYMC Leadership: Robert W. Amler, M.D., M.B.A., dean of School of Health Sciences and Practice and vice president for government affairs
NYMC Faculty: Gary P. Wormser, M.D., professor of medicine, chief of Division of Infectious Diseases and vice chairman of Department of Medicine