Government of Canada announces funding for Lyme disease research

News Release

Lyme disease is an infectious disease that is emerging in many parts of Canada, impacting many Canadians and their families.

The Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Health, today announced up to $4 million to establish a Lyme disease research network, with the aim of generating new knowledge to improve diagnosis and treatment.

This investment builds on the Government of Canada’s ongoing support to address Lyme disease, through surveillance, research, sharing of best practices, laboratory diagnostics and testing, prevention education, and public education and awareness.

Also today, the Government of Canada released the Federal Framework on Lyme Disease. The Framework, which is intended to help guide a way forward in areas where the federal government has a role, is built around three pillars: surveillance; guidelines and best practices; and education and awareness. Progress will be reported on an ongoing basis. 

Input from stakeholders—including federal, provincial and territorial health ministries, Lyme disease patients and patient groups, researchers, and health care providers—was considered in the development of the Framework. This Framework will support the continued collaboration and work between the federal and provincial and territorial governments in addressing Lyme disease. 

For information on how to prevent, recognize and take action against Lyme disease, visit


“The Government of Canada is committed to addressing the public health impacts of Lyme disease in Canada. This includes working with provincial and territorial health authorities and other partners to address this serious disease and supporting research on how to more effectively diagnose and treat the disease.”

The Honourable Jane Philpott, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Health

“We are at an important juncture for Lyme disease, and as we move forward collectively, it is critical that we come together with an evidence-based approach, and to address knowledge gaps through further research.  The Public Health Agency of Canada will work with public health, healthcare, patient groups, and other interested parties as we move forward together on the three pillars of the Framework.”

Dr. Theresa Tam
Interim Chief Public Health Officer

Quick Facts

  • Lyme disease is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria called Borrelia burgdorferi (B. burgdorferi). The bacteria are transmitted to people through the bite of select types of infected ticks.

  • Lyme disease in humans has been a nationally notifiable disease since 2009. Nationally notifiable diseases are infectious diseases that have been identified by the federal government and all provinces and territories as priorities for monitoring and control efforts.

  • The Federal Framework on Lyme Disease was developed in response to An Act respecting a Federal Framework on Lyme Disease, which came into force on December 16, 2014. The Act required the Minister of Health to convene a conference to develop a federal framework on Lyme disease with stakeholders. The conference took place in May 2016.

Associated Links


Andrew MacKendrick
Office of Jane Philpott
Minister of Health

Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada

Media Relations
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

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