Multiple sources agree: Lyme disease is on the rise.
The CDC reports that in 2017, a total of 42,743 confirmed and probable cases of Lyme disease were reported to the CDC, almost a 9% increase over 2016.
In 2018, Quest Diagnostics released a report of its own testing activity which found that rates of positivity for Lyme testing increased every year from 2014 to 2017.
In 2017, FAIR Health President Robin Gelburd published an analysis of FAIR Health’s repository of private healthcare claims data in the American Journal of Managed Care showing claims with a Lyme diagnosis rose between 2007 and 2016.
Multiple sources agree: Lyme disease is spreading
The CDC’s National Notifiable Disease Surveillance System (NNDSS) found that the number of counties with an incidence of ≥10 confirmed cases per 100,000 persons increased from 324 in 2008 to 454 in 2017, a 40% increase.
In 2015, CDC researcher Kiersten Kugler and her associates found that from 1993 to 2012, the number of counties having a high incidence of Lyme disease grew by more than 3X in the north-central states, and by more than 4X in the northeastern states.
In 2018, Quest Diagnostics released a report of its own testing activity which found “sharp increases” in positive Lyme results in Lyme-endemic New England, “notable increases” in positive results in non-endemic states like Georgia, Arizona, Ohio, Texas, Tennessee, and Virginia, and found that “the largest absolute increases” in positive test results between 2015-2017 were in Florida and California.
In 2017, FAIR Health President Robin Gelburd published an analysis of FAIR Health’s repository of private healthcare claims data in the American Journal of Managed Care noting “It appears that [Lyme disease] has found a foothold in the South” as North Carolina became one of the top 5 states in 2016 for percentage of all claims with a Lyme diagnosis.