A bill that establishes a commission to study the limitations of current testing for Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses and available treatment has been signed into law by New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu.
The commission also will look at appropriate methods for educating physicians and the public about the inconclusive nature of prevailing test methods and available treatment alternatives.
The measure says "the lack of understanding and agreement on the causes of, and the effectiveness of alternative prevailing tests for, Lyme and other tick-borne diseases, and on the alternatives currently used to treat patients with chronic symptoms after diagnosis of tick-borne diseases, has left patients in a divided world of controversy without adequate access to affordable care."
The commission will include lawmakers representing health and human services committees; a representative of the New Hampshire Medical Society; doctors who treat tick-borne diseases; a nurse practitioner; the state epidemiologist; two people who have been treated for chronic Lyme or other tick-borne diseases; and a tick-borne disease expert.
The National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says it supports the development of new tests as alternatives of the current two-step test process. It says such tests must be cleared by the Food and Drug Administration first.