Parliament: Question on the Draft Lyme Disease Framework

On Wednesday, March 8th, 2017 in Parliament, Question Period

Elizabeth May 

Mr. Speaker, in addition to this being International Women’s Day, it is also a deadline for the Minister of Health for comments on the federal framework on Lyme disease.

This has been brought into play by the bill I submitted in the 41st Parliament, unanimously supported in the House and the Senate, and continues to be strongly supported by members on all sides of this House. Unfortunately, the draft framework is inadequate. It needs a serious overhaul.

Could the Prime Minister assure us that the time, if it is necessary, will be taken to improve this framework?

Jane Philpott - Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands for her fantastic work on this very important topic, and indeed members from all parties who have been advocating on behalf of people who have been victims of Lyme disease.

I look forward to continuing to work with the member on making sure that we have a strong framework which recognizes the federal role in this, and that includes building national surveillance and annual reporting.

It includes making sure there is adequate research. It includes improving the guidelines for prevention and treatment of Lyme disease, and making sure that we raise awareness and education on how to prevent Lyme disease. I thank the member for her work.

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  • Kerri

    I trust that the government will never acknowledge chronic lyme disease!!! They are just humoring us. Thanks for just wasting our time. If by chance something ever changes it will be thanks to us who are suffering who is pushing for change.

  • Susan Owen

    Jane Philpott’s response is not adequate and does not address the seriousness of this problem. I lost my nursing career and am on disability. I had a text book case of Lyme, was not treated and found myself unable to work three years following that bite that caused classic symptoms of an expanding bull’s eye rash and flu like symptoms. My illness is not recognized by the Canadian Medical System. Your response did not address the plight of those who already have the disease and have lost their quality of life, their careers, homes, savings, retirement savings, loved ones, etc. Many of us were career people; judges, lawyers, teachers, doctors, naturopaths, veterinarians, nurses, etc. Others include the children of our future. All stake holders must be included in drawing up the draft and the framework. It should not be written by one select group and must include the president of the Canadian Lyme Foundation to ensure the draft and framework is not biased and address the plight of those already suffering with Lyme Disease.

  • Kcurrier

    Minister Philpot ….the Framework was supposed to include action items and alloted funding. The Framework negates the role of Chronic Lyme and the research that was presented to support it. The Framework prompted a change in case definition rendering Lyme disease much more restrictive for diagnosis. The Framework made no mention of co-infection that are commonly part of tick borne disease presentation. The Framework was supposed to include all members in its development which most certainly consists more than hearing the plight of thousands of Canadians who have become debilitated by the disease. It is shameful that doctors in Canada continue to receive biased status quo education through directives with the AMMI and feel threatened should they chose to work alongside their patients to provide comprehensive long term treatment. Minister Philpot…this issue is not going away … The Framework fails to meet its mandate on many fronts and your true commitment is imperative!!

  • Caroline Lennox

    What a pathetic response to a straightforward question.
    Had Philpott beem bought?
    Sorry to ask but am Fed up.

  • Carrie Weiss

    Joanna Petrakis and I ( Carrie Weiss ) are thrilled to Launch Lyme Out Loud Kids Canada. This has been a loving, demanding, draining, an emotional journey filled with tremendous SUPPORT, WARMTH, GUIDANCE AND ELATION. We are federally incorporated across our great country of Canada but in desperate need of a Loud Voice for Lyme Disease and it co-infections. This is our first step and our FOOTPRINT is here to stay!
    Please join us by spreading the word of our Medical/Educational Lyme Symposium on April 21, 2017, google:
    Featuring the brilliance of Doctors such as Dr Richard Howowitz, Dr Garth Ehrlich and Dr Juergen Richt, Zoonotic to name a few. With more than 80,000 Physicians in Canada, we hope to engage a few hundred and expand the desperate Lyme Literate Doctors and Support needed in our country. Please share with your village of professional support and politicians. Should you wish to volunteer or donate in-kind our honour. LOL goal is to financially support children/youth with the disease.

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