The News Tribune logo

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Washington State Wants You!

Washington State is looking for our help to gather statistics on ticks…by gathering ticks to get statistics on. The state wishes to put together a tick distribution map and check said ticks for infections, such as Lyme.  This is something the Lyme community in Washington has wanted for a long time, excited about the education it will bring.  When my daughter was first showing the symptoms of Lyme, almost fourteen years ago now, we were constantly told by physicians that Lyme did not exist in this state.  Today, you will still be told that Lyme is extremely rare here, most cases coming from out of state, by most physicians you see.  As we searched for another doctor for Anna, the ignorance and panic was palpable in so many who rejected her as a patient.  One doc, hands in the air, said, “I don’t know anything about Lyme’s disease!” (that’s Lyme disease, folks, not Lyme’s!) “I don’t want to learn!”

Residents of Washington are being asked to submit any ticks we find to its tick identification program in Olympia. Use the online tick identification submission form at

If you find a tick, follow these steps:

1. Keep the tick alive, if possible.

2. Use one or two blades of grass, or you can moisten a small piece of tissue paper with one or two drops of water. Place the grass blades or moistened tissue, with the tick, into a small plastic or metal container (an empty pill bottle works well). Close tightly.

3. Put the container holding the tick into a sealed plastic bag. Place the bag into a padded envelope for mailing.  That’s pill container, plastic bag, and padded envelope, around the wee bugger!

4. Provide the location and county where the tick was collected and mail it with your tick to:

WA Tick Identification

Zoonotic Disease Program

P.O. Box 47825

Olympia, WA 98504-7825

If you wish to be notified as to what kind of tick was submitted, provide your telephone number and/or email address.

Getting statistics is so important in this fight…however…should that tick be found after attaching to you, or a loved one, my advice remains the same as it has ever been.  That tick should be packaged and sent to one of the country’s best labs for tick-borne infections, like Igenex, Frye, or Clongen labs.  Your health is the statistic to be most concerned about.


Gigi said...

What good news that Washington State is finally getting on board with researching Lyme Disease. I saved the link to the document to have it on hand when I do find a tick. Such an easy thing to do and I urge all readers to do the same as well. Lorraine and Anna have worked for years to keep us informed of this life altering disease. Please honor them and do your part to help with this research. Keep your eyes open for those tiny buggers!

Lorraine Hart said...

Thanks Gigi! You'll never guess who started all this on the west insurance company. Google KaiserPapers and Lyme...I'll try to get a link....

Our fourth year of nursing students are doing their Lyme project on animals, making an educational brochure for vets! Every year they have come up with a great way to push awareness, and help Lyme patients.