Lyme Task Force Is Named

    State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle is among those named to head a Senate task force that will be charged with studying state and federal efforts to combat Lyme and other tick-borne diseases and make recommendations for a state plan to improve prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of them.

    Joining Mr. LaValle, a Republican from Port Jefferson, in leading the committee are Senator Kemp Hannon, a Republican from Garden City who is chairman of the Senate Health Committee, Senator David Carlucci, a Democrat from Rockland, and Senator Elizabeth Little, a Republican from Queensbury.

    The creation of the task force was announced by Senators Dean Skelos and Jeffrey Klein, the co-leaders of the Senate Majority Coalition.

     “I have, for many years, worked with the East End towns in my district to seek ways to control ticks and the spread of tick-borne diseases, including securing funds for four-poster feeding stations,” which spread insecticide on the coats of deer who feed from them, Mr. LaValle said in a release. “Tick-borne diseases and, specifically, Lyme disease are debilitating and must be controlled and stopped.”

    The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently estimated that about 300,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme each year nationally. Lyme is the most commonly reported of all tick-borne illnesses in the United States, with New York being one of 13 states that see the most cases.    A timetable has not been announced for the task force to complete its work and offer recommendations.