Military Veteran Residential Location and Risk for Lyme Disease
Some research has shown that Lyme disease cases among U.S. military veterans have increased since the early 2000s. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether high concentrations of military veterans live in areas where Lyme disease is hyper-endemic. Lyme disease case-report data for 2015 were retrieved at the county-level from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Veteran population density at the county level was determined using data from the U.S. Census. County control variables, such as weather patterns, forestation, and socioeconomic conditions were retrieved from various sources. Multiple linear regression was used to examine associations between variables. After controlling for county-level environmental and social conditions, results showed that military veteran population density was positively associated with Lyme disease incidence rates. Military veterans, due to their choice of geographic residence and recreation, may be a population at risk for developing Lyme disease.