Lyme disease surveillance in Canada: Annual edition 2022 (infographic)

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Organization: Public Health Agency of Canada

Published: 2024-04-12

Cat.: HP37-44E-PDF

ISBN: 2817-237X

Pub.: 240261

What is Lyme disease?

  • Lyme disease is a bacterial infection transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected tick.
  • Early symptoms can present as flu-like symptoms including joint pain and/or bull's eye rash. If untreated, individuals may experience cardiac and neurologic manifestations and arthritis.

What is the risk?

  • Lyme disease is the most frequently reported vector-borne disease in Canada. Vector-borne diseases are infectious diseases transmitted to humans by vectors including ticks and mosquitoes.
  • The greatest risk of acquiring Lyme disease occurs in regions where populations of ticks carrying the bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi, have become established.

Who's at greater risk?

Cases occurred in all age groups. Those at greatest risk were:

  • children aged 5-14 years
  • adults aged 60-79 years

Human cases reported in 2022

  • 2,525 cases of Lyme disease were reported, of which, 83% were confirmed cases and 17% probable cases
  • 54% cases were males
  • 46% cases were females

Geographic distribution of reported cases

  • Cases reported by Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Prince Edward Island were travel−related only.
  • 3% of reported cases were likely infected during travel in the USA or Europe.
The distribution of reported Lyme disease cases in Canada
Province Number of reported Lyme disease cases
British Columbia 12
Alberta 17
Saskatchewan 2
Manitoba 38
Ontario 1,478
Quebec 586
New Brunswick 59
Nova Scotia 326Footnote *
Prince Edward Island 7
Newfoundland & Labrador 0
Yukon 0
Northwest Territories 0
Nunavut 0


Footnote *

In Nova Scotia, due to competing public health priorities in the COVID-19 pandemic, Lyme disease case data were not consistently entered into Panorama, not validated, and therefore under-represent the true burden of disease.

Return to footnote * referrer


  • 32% of cases reported illness onset in July
  • 95% of cases reported an illness onset between May and November

Tips to avoid tick bites

Protecting yourself when doing outdoor activities:

  • cover exposed skin
  • use insect repellent

Reducing risk:

  • do a full-body check for ticks after each outdoor activity
  • remove ticks using clean, fine-point tweezers

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