Little information is available about the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation compared to the wealth of information on the ALDF. CLDF does, however, maintain a website purporting to advance research, Lyme disease awareness, and prevention of Lyme disease and other tick-borne infectious disease in Canada. For many years the Canadian health authorities have maintained that Lyme disease is not a problem, but in recent times there has been a recognition that certain areas are endemic for Lyme disease, such as south-eastern Ontario, and parts of British Columbia, including Vancouver Island. In recent months there has also been a warning issued in Alberta alerting the public to the presence of infected ticks in the province. The Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation is based in Westbank, British Columbia, and its members are working with both provincial and federal government to create guidelines for new laboratory testing, clinical practice, and surveillance in Canada.
CLDF Focuses on Lyme Disease Research
The Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation is particularly focused on creating Lyme disease research facilities capable of carrying out live tissue and post mortem studies into Lyme disease and conditions which have been associated with the infection. The foundation lists these as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Fibromyalgia, Alzheimer’s Disease, Crohn’s Disease, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (myalgic encephalomyelitis, or ME). A non-profit society, the foundation has a number of scientists as board members one of whom (W. Reuben Kaufman) has considerable experience studying the ticks that carry Lyme disease, and another who has a degree in entomology (Janet Sperling). The other members of the board are largely those who suffer(ed) from Lyme disease or have family members affected by the condition.
CanLyme Challenges Lyme-Denial in Canada
The founder of the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation is Jim Wilson whose background is in the field of medical malpractice and legal liability. This background is, perhaps, reflected in the foundation’s assessment of much of the government and medical authorities’ stance on Lyme disease. Wilson was himself a sufferer of Lyme disease, as were his children, and he is clearly passionate about helping others whilst keeping a watchful eye on potential conflicts of interest and Lyme disease quackery. The only medical doctor on the board is Redwan Moqbel, head of the University of Winnipeg’s Department of Immunology, with other board members including a former Councillor and provincial MLA. CanLyme maintains a Lyme disease forum with over 90,000 registered users, providing a substantial resource for Lyme disease patients to get support.