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Lyme disease prevention

On the Job, Safety & Codes | August 1, 2015 | By:

Outdoor workers may be at risk for tick-borne illnesses.

Tick-borne diseases are commonly associated with outdoor recreation such as hunting and fishing, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recognize that outdoor workers are also at risk.

The CDC offers a Lyme disease fact sheet for outdoor workers in English, Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese. The CDC advises outdoor workers to:

  • Use insect repellent that contains 20-30 percent DEET.
  • Wear clothing that has been treated with permethrin.
  • Take a shower as soon as you can after working outdoors.
  • Look for ticks on your body. Ticks can hide under the armpits, behind the knees, in the hair and in the groin.
  • Put your clothes in the dryer on high heat for 60 minutes to kill any remaining ticks.

In 2013, 95 percent of confirmed Lyme disease cases in the U.S. were reported from 14 states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin.

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