Complexities of Lyme Disease


About Health, 8/14/23 on KPFA radio—94.1FM

One of the many health impacts the climate crisis has had in recent years is an increase is vector-borne diseases, including diseases caused by ticks, such as Lyme and Babesiosis. Lyme has been a challenge regarding diagnosis and treatment for a long time, leaving many patients with inadequate testing, high medical bills, and doctors who dismiss the varied, debilitating, and inconsistent symptoms of Lyme.

A young women, Olivia Goodreau, has made it her mission to raise awareness, support research efforts, and create a user-friendly app to identify tick populations, which are seen worldwide. She has suffered from the chronic effects of tick-borne illness on a daily basis. After seeing over 50 doctors to find out what was wrong with her, she met Dr. Richard Horowitz, who gave her the attention and care she had been hoping and praying for. Olivia Goodreau and Dr Horowitz will join me to discuss Lyme disease, including some of the new efforts and treatments on the horizon.



Olivia Goodreau’s recently published memoir is, But She Looks Fine – From Illness to Advocacy”. This is the story of how she turned the physical challenges and emotional hardships she has faced since she was a little girl into an engaged life of advocacy for others. She is the founder (at age 12) of LivLyme Foundation, a nonprofit that provides financial assistance to children and their families struggling with Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. LivLyme also supports the work of researchers and scientists who are dedicated to finding effective treatments and cures for tick-borne diseases. Olivia is also the inventor of the free global TickTracker App, the Tickmojis App, and her latest free app, LongHaulTracker.

Olivia has testified twice in front of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Tick-Borne Disease Working Group, and both the House and Senate in Maryland. She helped pass the Kay Hagan Tick Act at the request of Senator Susan Collins of Maine, which appropriated $150 million dollars for tick-borne diseases. Olivia lobbied with the Center for Lyme Action and spoke at their inaugural “fly in” helping to increase the tick-borne diseases congressional budget by $91 million.

So many young people are faced with life-changing hardships from illness and disease. What Olivia discovers through her journey with chronic Lyme, is that inside of every predicament is also a possibility. Olivia will be attending UCLA in the fall of 2023, majoring in political science with a double minor in public health and international business.



Dr. Richard Horowitz is a board-certified internist and medical director of the Hudson Valley Healing Arts Center, an integrative medical center specializing in the treatment of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. He has treated over 13,000 Lyme and TBD patients in the last 30 years and is one of the founding members and past president elect of The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS). Dr Horowitz has published multiple peer-reviewed articles on effective diagnostic and treatment options for Lyme and co-infections and served as a member of the Health and Human Services (HHS) Tick-borne Disease Working Group in 2017-2018. He was also co-chair of the HHS Tick-borne Co-infection subcommittee which gave recommendations to Congress on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of tick-borne illness, and he was recently elected to the NYS Department of Health Tick-borne Disease Working Group. For dedicating his life to helping those stricken with this devastating illness, he has been awarded the Humanitarian of the Year award by the Turn the Corner Foundation and awards from Project Lyme.

Dr Horowitz also published the first peer reviewed article in the world literature on the role of glutathione deficiency in COVID-19, which has now been cited over 200 times. He is the author of two best-selling books on Lyme disease, Why Can’t I Get Better? and How Can I Get Better? He also recently released his first science fiction/climate change novel, Starseed R/evolution, The Awakening, which contains innovative scientific solutions for our climate crisis.