NACCHO hosted a webinar on April 9, 2019 covering major updates on tickborne diseases in the United States. Dr. Grace Marx, medical epidemiologist at the CDC, gave a general overview on tickborne disease epidemiology and prevention, and she introduced new topics including invasive tick species and surveillance guidance.
Specific information about the extent of the recent multi-state invasion of the exotic tick H. longicornis was discussed, as well as the real risk of pathogen spread by this exotic vector. Dr. Marx also reviewed contributing factors to the increasing trend of tickborne diseases, including the role of the vector, host, and climate. New resources developed at the CDC were introduced, including a provider educational series on Lyme disease, guidance for Lyme disease surveillance in low incidence states, and recommendations for surveillance programs for Ixodes scapularis and I pacificus. Recent updates to NACCHO’s online Vector Control Toolkit were highlighted.
Grace Marx, MD, MPH, is a medical epidemiologist with the Bacterial Diseases Branch at CDC’s Division of Vector-borne Diseases and a lieutenant commander in the United States Public Health Service. Her primary areas of interest include the epidemiology of Lyme disease, tularemia, and plague, as well as the prevention of tick bites and tickborne diseases. She received her MD and MPH (epidemiology) degrees from the University of Washington and maintains board certification in both internal medicine and infectious disease. She was stationed at Tri-County Health Department, the largest local public health agency in Colorado, as an officer with CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service fellowship program.