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Press release content from Globe Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

Lyme Disease Awareness Month is Helped by the Global Impact of the Teen-Created Free TickTracker App

May 1, 2019

DENVER, Colo., May 01, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In support of the month of May’s focus on Lyme disease awareness, the LivLyme Foundation is encouraging the public to download the free TickTracker app, which is available at the Google Play and Apple app stores. Created by 14-year-old Olivia Goodreau to help combat tick-transmitted infections and diseases, the app uses a patent-pending algorithm to coordinate multiple tick-activity data sources into a simple and user-friendly map view. TickTracker continues to grow and has users in countries across the globe. It is Olivia’s hope that the app will become more of a key data resource for scientists and government agencies in the United States that are combating ticks and tick-borne disease expansion. The plan is to continue developing the app into multiple languages so that everyone can have access in their native tongue. Currently, the apps technology is available in English, French and Spanish with easy distribution in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France, and Australia.

The federal government has rallied around the promotion of the free app to the public, selecting TickTracker as a part of the 2018 The Opportunity Project’s (TOP) Sprint Program. After completing the 14-week program, TickTracker was a focal point in the Census Bureau’s TOP Demo Day, which showcased 20+ new innovative tech tools to more than 15 governmental agencies searching for effective ways to solve some of the world’s most critical challenges. Olivia’s TickTracker app was also selected by the Department of Health and Human Services as one of the most impactful technological creations coming out of the TOP Health Sprint. This recognition garnered Olivia an invitation to present at the TOP Health Showcase on the White House grounds at the request of the Presidential Innovation Fellows and Department of Health and Human Services in early February 2019.

In addition to providing real-time and historic data on an interactive map using geolocation, users can report tick sightings and bites. The life-saving app also educates users, especially kids, about tick identification, prevention and safety through game-based learning. Olivia contracted Lyme disease during a family vacation while in the first grade, but she was not diagnosed with the illness until 18-months later after going through a battery of tests and seeing 51 doctors. This experience prompted her to devote countless hours to the cause by supporting research and organizing fundraising events through the LivLyme Foundation. However, her greatest contribution to date may be the creation of the life-saving TickTracker app.

Lyme is one of the fastest growing vector-borne diseases. Every year, more than 350,000 people contract the illness, while many of them never get a ‘bullseye’ rash or even know they were bitten. Lyme disease can be transmitted from mosquito bites, rodents, mother-to-child transmission, and many other ways. Based on current usage, TickTracker has a goal to develop the largest collection of tick sightings and tick reports in the world to further the global effort to eradicate tick-borne disease. TickTracker collects tick photos that are shared with Lyme labs and research facilities to help scientists better track tick populations and ultimately aid in their research for a cure to Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. With the discovery of the Asian Longhorn Tick in 2017, health officials are concerned about the case numbers increasing. This particular tick, which can also be found on pets, livestock, and wildlife, can reproduce without mating. Swarms of ticks can attack in numbers of 1,000 or more on one animal or person. Which is why it is vital that the public is aware of the free TickTracker app across the globe. For the full press kit, visit: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/504fale0wkg8ddd/AABGIlBpE9IPPS_1OFnZIYgJa?dl=0

Jeff Howard, Managing Partner Gomez Howard Group 303-513-1628 jeff@gomezhowardgroup.com