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ILADS > Report on the Southern Tier Lyme Support Conference

Lyme Disease Conference, May 4, 2019 Report

Southern Tier Lyme Support Inc. (hereafter, STLS) and Binghamton University (hereafter BU) co-hosted our fifth annual Lyme disease conference on May 4, 2019.

Press Conference Photo
Press Conference at Southern Tier Lyme Support Lyme Disease Conference

Pre Conference Activities

Last year, in Broome County, Lyme disease diagnoses jumped 36%. Over the previous five years, Lyme diagnoses increased 525%. Given these numbers, we felt we needed to augment our efforts to spread awareness of Lyme disease.

The owners of the Security Mutual Building, an iconic landmark in Binghamton, illuminated the exterior of the building in green light during the week leading up to the conference.

On May 2, members of STLS planted 400 green flags on the courthouse lawn, one flag for each person reported to have been diagnosed with Lyme in our area. After the flags were planted, a press conference was held. Speakers included two state legislators and the County Executive for Broome County. An important focus of the press conference was on the NY state legislature’s failure to fund Lyme disease research in the recently enacted budget. In the previous year, the legislature had provided $1 million in funding.

On Friday, May 3, STLS hosted a meeting for Lyme community leaders throughout NY state. The purpose of the meeting was to better share knowledge and resources on key Lyme disease advocacy issues.

Lyme Disease Conference

189 persons attended the all-day event. In addition, there were 36 volunteers plus another 20 university students who provided poster presentations.

The conference included 16 Lyme disease related vendors. In addition, BU conducted blood draws, part of the university’s program to establish a biobank of samples from patients with documented Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses.

The conference included ten guest speakers, who spoke on a wide range of Lyme disease topics. Dr. Kenneth Liegner, the featured speaker gave a talk on chronic Lyme disease. Each lecture was well attended. We are attaching a list of speakers, and their lecture topics.

All of the lectures were recorded. They will be aired on our website, once the editing has been completed.

We are extremely grateful to ILADS for your organization’s support for the conference!

Peter Baumann
President, Southern Tier Lyme Support