The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates approximately 476,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease in the United States each year. While many will recover with a short course of antibiotics, up to 35% will suffer from persistent symptoms after initial treatment. Despite scientific evidence showing the infection can persist long after initial treatment, most insurance companies restrict access to treatment beyond twenty-eight days, leaving patients to bear much of the financial burden. To limit crippling out-of-pocket expenses, Congress must enact legislation mandating coverage for the treatment of clinically diagnosed Lyme disease and co-infections based on the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society’s Guidelines. Further, Congress must require insurance companies to report all claims related to Lyme disease in order to hold insurance companies accountable. Lyme patients have suffered for decades from insurance injustice. It is time for Congress to act.
Jennifer Barrett, It’s About Lyme: Why Congress Must Enact Medical Insurance Coverage Laws for Lyme Disease Patients Now, 45 Seattle U. L. Rev. SUpra 50 (2021)
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