Matthew Pennycook – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Matthew Pennycook on 2016-02-23.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that (a) more cases of chronic lyme disease are correctly diagnosed and (b) more people with chronic lyme disease receive the appropriate treatment.

Jane Ellison

Our aim is to ensure that cases of Lyme disease at all its stages and manifestations are recognised and treated appropriately. The National Health Service provides medical care following international guidance and most cases are dealt with by general practitioners (GPs). To help ensure people receive the appropriate treatment Public Health England has published a referral pathway for GPs to follow. Where additional investigation is required, specialist referral may be necessary and a small number of NHS clinics will see complicated cases. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has been commissioned to develop guidelines for the recognition and treatment of Lyme disease; this is expected in June 2018.

Public Health England PHE) regularly review new tests for Lyme disease and participate in a Europe wide Quality Assurance programme to ensure that the most suitable tests available are used.

In addition, PHE provide information on Lyme disease and tick awareness to the medical profession and the public, and holds regular medical training days, and works with Lyme Disease Action to support the needs and interests of patients.