Brooke Hansen, Anthropology, organizes educational fundraiser for Ithaca Free Clinic on lyme disease


Contributed by Jack Rossen

Brooke Hansen and the Education Committee of the Ithaca Health Alliance, including anthropology majors Matthew Brooks (’15) and Mary Bowers (’13), organized a film showing of Under Our Skin on Feb. 27th which raised over $800 for the Ithaca Free Clinic.

The film was the first of a two part education series about chronic lyme disease. The theater at Cinemapolis was sold out with people sitting on the floor and the stairs. The inspiration behind the event came from the many people in the local community, including those at Ithaca College, who were initially undiagnosed with lyme or are having post-treatment issues. The film features the political and economic controversies surrounding chronic lyme and includes those who were misdiagnosed, refused health insurance and have subsequently faced many health challenges, some of them debilitating. Michael O’Sullivan of the Washington Post reported that the film is “like a well-made thriller, gets under your skin…More deeply terrifying than any slasher film you’ll ever see.”

Part two of the series is coming up March 18th from 4-5:15pm at the Tompkins County Library, Borg Warner Room: Lyme Disease: Let’s Talk About It. The panel discussion features health practitioners Deanna Berman - N.D. (naturopath), 7Song - IFC Director of Holistic Medicine (herbalist), Jen Parr Mutolo - L.Ac. (acupuncturist) and Ronald Stram - M.D. (chronic disease specialist). 

Brooke is organizing a research project to collect the stories of people on our campus and community suffering with lyme disease. Contact her if you are interested in either assisting in the co-organization of the study or want to participate and share your story. or 607-274-1735.