Stony Brook Southampton Hospital is providing more than 500 tick removal kits to about 150 schools in Suffolk County, officials said.
The first kit was delivered last week to the Eastport-South Manor Central School District, where a nurse had removed ticks from four children in one day, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said Thursday.
The county distributed 516 kits to 145 schools last weekend in cooperation with the Tick-Borne Disease Resource Center at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital, he said.
“This partnership demonstrates how schools, hospitals, and county government can work together to protect our residents from the dangers of tick-borne diseases,” Bellone said in a statement.
The tick removal kits have fine-tipped tweezers and a magnifying glass that will help school nurses remove ticks.
They also have antiseptic cloths, antibiotic ointment, bandages, and a tick identification card.
Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne infection nationwide, and Suffolk County has been a hot zone of the ailment for decades, experts said.
Among the diseases carried by ticks on Long Island are Lyme disease, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Suffolk County residents seeking information about ticks and tick-borne diseases can contact the Stony Brook Southampton Hospital Tick-Borne Disease Resource Center Help Line at (631) 726-TICK (8425.)