The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has issued a new quality standard focusing on diagnosis and management of Lyme disease in individuals of all ages, with respect to high-quality care in priority areas for improvement.
The key goals of the quality standard are improvements in the following areas:
- Quality of life;
- Public awareness of the disease;
- Awareness among individuals from high-risk occupational groups; and
- Patients experience of individuals treated in primary care.
The quality standard covers the following four recommendations:
- Individuals presenting with erythema migrans should receive a diagnosis and treatment for Lyme disease based on the clinical assessment, without laboratory testing.
- Individuals with suspected Lyme disease and no erythema migrans having a negative enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test within four weeks of their symptom onset should receive a repeat test four to six weeks later if suspicion still remains.
- Individuals with Lyme disease should receive initial antibiotic treatment, with the choice of antibiotic, dosage and duration determined by their symptoms.
- Local authorities should organise health promotion activities in collaboration with local organisations to raise public awareness regarding the prevention of Lyme disease.
Health professionals should also consider the quality standard on Antimicrobial stewardship when providing services for Lyme disease.