Manitoba identifies expanded risk areas for Lyme disease, 11 cases in 2015
The province announced Friday the geographic range of blacklegged ticks continues to expand north and west in Manitoba.
According to the annual blacklegged ticks surveillance program, the risk of tick-borne disease transmission is greatest in these areas.
Diseases include Anaplasmosis, Babesiosis and Lyme disease.
Blacklegged ticks found within the risk areas are more likely to carry the agents that cause the diseases. While these same ticks can be found outside of these areas, the risk of transmission is lower.
The province said to date, 11 confirmed and probable cases of Lyme disease have been reported in 2015.
Since 2009, a total of 67 cases have been confirmed in Manitoba.
In Lyme disease risk areas and elsewhere, blacklegged ticks are most commonly found within and along the edge of forests and in areas with thick, woody shrubs and other vegetation.
Manitobans are encouraged to take precautions to minimize their risk of tick exposure by:
- Applying an appropriate tick-repellent, following label directions, on exposed skin and clothing
- Inspecting themselves, children and pets after spending time outdoors
- Removing ticks as soon as possible from people and pets
- Staying to the centre of walking trails
- Wearing long pants and long-sleeved shirts
- Keeping grass and shrubs around homes cut short to create drier environments that are less suitable for blacklegged tick survival.
People who think they may have a tick-borne disease should see their doctor. For more information, contact Health Links–Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll-free at 1 888 315-9257.
For more information about Lyme disease, including the updated map showing the new and expanded Lyme disease risk areas, visit www.gov.mb.ca/health/lyme.html.