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Don’t Get Ticked Off This Spring – Take This Survey and Test That Tick

This one's from the Middlesex Tick Task Force, and they mean business.

Tick. Credit: Patch file photo
Tick. Credit: Patch file photo

The Middlesex Tick Task Force (MTTF), comprised of municipal officials and residents from surrounding towns, including Wayland, have been busy this spring spreading the word on tick-borne illness prevention. The task force recognizes that Lyme Disease is endemic in the area and is the most reported infectious disease in many of our communities, while other tick-borne illnesses are on the rise. 

MTTF invites you to take the Tick-Borne Illness Survey, which helps gather data on residents’ knowledge of tick-borne illnesses and their risk of exposure. Your input is crucial. 

The survey results will allow local boards of health to tailor future educational programs toward the needs of their communities. This survey is anonymous and should only take about 10-15 minutes to complete. The survey also contains answers to questions about ticks, tick-borne illnesses, and prevention strategies for residents and their pets. 

If you are looking for more information on tick bite prevention and how to do a tick check, we invite you to watch an excellent short informational video, produced by Carlisle Health Department, which can be found at www.tinyurl.com/TickBitePrevention

Tick Testing at a Reduced Rate 

Did you know if a tick bites you, you can submit the tick for testing at UMass Laboratory of Medical Zoology (LMZ)? The standard and most common test of deer ticks is $50. For this, LMZ identifies the tick, photographs it (dorsal and ventral), assesses its feeding condition, and provides test results for presence of Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis, and Babesiosis. The results are provided to you to share with your medical provider, if you choose. The findings of the testing are maintained anonymously and help local and state agencies build a surveillance database to better inform public health disease prevention programs and track tick-borne disease. 

If you should find a tick biting you, carefully remove it using tweezers and place it in a sealable plastic bag. The lab can analyze a tick submitted in almost any condition. Navigate your browser to www.TickReport.com, complete an online testing submittal form, write the order number provided on the bag and send it in an envelope with the tick to the address indicated on the website. 


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