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Lyme disease measure passes in state legislature

ALBANY – Legislation that would allow physicians to prescribe treatment on an individual basis for Lyme disease patients has passed in both houses of the state legislature.

Assemblywoman Didi Barrett (D, Hudson) sponsored the measure, which passed with bipartisan support.

“This bill would allow doctors the discretion to prescribe vital antibiotics for a period of time beyond their traditional use when they determine such care is in the best interest of their patients without risk of censure,” she said.

Barrett noted the Hudson Valley has become the epicenter of the Lyme disease epidemic in the Northeastern US with 50,000 people contracting the disease in 2012 alone.

In the case of Lyme disease, she said the practice of medicine has not kept pace with the research advances on the biological agents responsible for the disease symptom.