LORDS VALLEY, PIKE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Spring is here, and so are the ticks.
Pennsylvania’s Lyme disease cases are among the highest in the country, affecting thousands of people each year. But now, a new resource is available to help combat those numbers in the Poconos.
A new tick treatment facility opened today in Pike County. Appointments were packed tight, and at least one patient already needed to have a tick removed.
Harriet Loizeaux Leads the new Tick-Borne Disease Wellness Center in Lords Valley. It’s located within the Pike Family Health Center off Route 739.
She says, “and it is specifically for patients who have been bitten by a tick, who thought they may have been bitten by a tick, or who have multiple bites.”
Every Wednesday, the center will provide testing and treatment for new patients, and advice for those who are already diagnosed. Loizeaux says tick-borne diseases, like Lyme, can cause life-threatening complications unless they’re caught in time.
She adds, “the new literature suggests that we test and treat as early as possible.”
This is a partnership between Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers and the Pike County Commissioners Task Force on Tick-Borne Disease.
“There was a huge need and they asked us if we could bring some medical resources to the table,” says Fred Jackson, Executive Director, Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers.
Fred Jackson is Executive Director of Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers. He says this facility is unique to the area. He explains, “Pike County is really the epicenter of the crisis. You see infection rates in Pike County that are higher than pretty much any place in the country.”
Patients must be 18 or older, and have a primary care provider. Services are not free but most major insurances are accepted, as are referrals.