Location

Schewel 215

Access Type

Open Access

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

April 2022

Department

Public Health

Abstract

Background: Healthcare providers lack knowledge about tick-borne diseases related to recognition, diagnosis, treatments, and communication. With the number of ticks and types of tick-borne diseases increasing, it is vital that providers know how to effectively diagnose, manage and treat a TBD patient.

Methods: A mixed method survey was implemented in 2021 with persons diagnosed with a tick-borne disease to explore their experiences with diagnosis, management and treatment. The survey was posted on TBD social media pages and sent through email snowballing. Thematic analysis was used to code results from three open-ended questions.

Results: A total of 434 patients diagnosed with at least one of 16 tick-borne diseases from 32 states participated. Three in five patients (60.6%) were misdiagnosed at least once. Patient-provider interactions, diagnosis/testing, management/treatment, education and individualized care were the 5 major themes identified. Listening to patients and being educated on TBD diagnosis, management and treatments were top recommendations.

Conclusions: To improve patient health outcomes, providers need to be educated on tick-borne diseases and how to recognize, diagnose, manage and treat patients with a TBD. This involves believing patients, being knowledgeable of current research, sharing resources and working with each patient individually.

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Jennifer Hall

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Apr 6th, 4:15 PM

Recommendations for Providers to Improve Quality of Care & Health Outcomes for Patients with Tick-borne Diseases

Schewel 215

Background: Healthcare providers lack knowledge about tick-borne diseases related to recognition, diagnosis, treatments, and communication. With the number of ticks and types of tick-borne diseases increasing, it is vital that providers know how to effectively diagnose, manage and treat a TBD patient.

Methods: A mixed method survey was implemented in 2021 with persons diagnosed with a tick-borne disease to explore their experiences with diagnosis, management and treatment. The survey was posted on TBD social media pages and sent through email snowballing. Thematic analysis was used to code results from three open-ended questions.

Results: A total of 434 patients diagnosed with at least one of 16 tick-borne diseases from 32 states participated. Three in five patients (60.6%) were misdiagnosed at least once. Patient-provider interactions, diagnosis/testing, management/treatment, education and individualized care were the 5 major themes identified. Listening to patients and being educated on TBD diagnosis, management and treatments were top recommendations.

Conclusions: To improve patient health outcomes, providers need to be educated on tick-borne diseases and how to recognize, diagnose, manage and treat patients with a TBD. This involves believing patients, being knowledgeable of current research, sharing resources and working with each patient individually.