LymeBasics 2019 Year End Recap
December 2019 Doug Fearn, President
This has been a busy year for Lymebasics.org. Over the summer we changed our name from the Lyme Disease Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania to lymebasics.org.
Our original name, dating from our founding in 2003, caused confusion with the national Lyme Disease Association, of which we are an affiliate. It also defined a specific area, which is no longer relevant. We are best known for our green booklet, “Lyme and associated diseases: The Basics” which has been in print since 1999, and has been requested by over 400,000 people.
We are the same organization, with the same group of dedicated volunteers. Only the name has changed. The information on the website lymebasics.org has been reorganized to make it more compatible with smartphones and tablets. And our Facebook page is attracting viewers, providing Lyme disease news and education in brief segments.
A Spanish language version of the Basics was developed in 2019 in collaboration with professional translators. A printed version will be available soon.
We continue to participate with the Chester County Health Department, through our affiliation with the Pennsylvania Lyme Disease Awareness Committee, sponsored by the Chester-Delaware County Farm Bureau. We meet with the Health Department monthly to exchange the latest Lyme disease developments, and to collaborate with them in community outreach events.
After 15 years of monthly meetings, usually featuring a prominent expert in Lyme disease, we experienced a steep decline in attendance, since most people now prefer to obtain their information on-line. This phenomenon is not unique to lymebasics.org; other advocacy groups around the country report a similar trend. The low attendance made it difficult to ask doctors and other experts to travel to Kennett Square only to talk to a handful of people. Therefore, in 2019 we decided to shift our focus from monthly meetings with speakers, to quarterly meetings devoted to support for Lyme patients and caregivers. See our web site for details.
In 2019 we made over 30 Lyme presentations at schools, businesses, civic groups, government agencies, libraries and others. We had information tables at events sponsored by legislators, clubs, health fairs, as well as events like the Mushroom Festival and Sheep and Wool Day, both in Chester County.
We helped over 500 people find Lyme-literate doctors and answered their questions about tick-borne diseases.
We also had our annual meeting with legislators in Harrisburg to provide them with the most recent information, and to urge support of legislation requiring health insurance to pay for treatment and to protect our dedicated doctors from prosecution.
Our all-volunteer board members devote countless hours to helping the Lyme community. They attended medical conferences, keeping us current on latest developments and reinforcing our strong connection with other advocacy groups and Lyme-treating doctors. All our operations are funded by donations, with occasional grants for specific projects.
Your tax-deductible donation helps us continue and to expand. Thank you for your support and feel free to contact us by phone (610-388-7333) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions, reports and a request for a doctor recommendation.