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Leading Southern California Physicians Report Patient Fears About Complexities of Flu Season

Thursday, October 15, 2009 General News J E 4
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-- Lakeside Community Healthcare Launches LakesideFluInfo.Com to Tackle Misinformation --

GLENDALE, Calif., Oct. 14 -- Although some parents may be lukewarm to the H1N1 vaccination, Lakeside Community Healthcare www.LakesideCommunityHealthcare.com, one of Southern California’s largest integrated, comprehensive healthcare organizations, reports broader patient concern about both the safety of and access to the vaccine. In response, Lakeside Community Healthcare has launched www.LakesideFluInfo.com to give patients direct access to the information they need to know about both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 virus.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081112/LAW052LOGO)

According to a survey of Lakeside Community Healthcare physicians, patients are more concerned than in years past about this flu season, with the majority of Lakeside Community Healthcare Medical Group physicians reporting their patients believe they or someone close to them could actually contract swine flu. “Up to this point, patients have had to sift through a lot of information about the potential impact of both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 strain,” said Martin Smietanka, M.D., Lakeside Community Healthcare Medical Group. “But even with all the updates, we find many still asking lots of questions, especially about the protocols regarding who should get the vaccine and how they should protect themselves and their children from exposure to H1N1.”

LakesideFluInfo.com includes information designed to assure patients about the safety and efficacy of the H1N1 vaccine and explains why this particular flu strain was not included in the vaccine now in use for seasonal flu.

“With both the media attention and consumer concerns, there has been a lot of misinformation about the H1N1 vaccine, including some who are worried they or their children can contract the virus from the vaccine, when that is not the case,” Smietanka added.  “Getting the H1N1 vaccination is the best protection against contracting the H1N1 virus.”

In addition to getting the H1N1 vaccine when it becomes available, Lakeside Community Healthcare physicians are recommending patients become familiar with the flu’s symptoms; disinfect areas around the home or workplace that could harbor germs; understand what their employer or child’s school expects to do in the event of an outbreak; and take important precautions, such as washing hands frequently  and avoiding the spread of germs by using a tissue, coughing or sneezing into an elbow and not touching one’s hands, eyes and mouth.

Lakeside Community Healthcare is part of privately held Lakeside Systems, Inc., one of Southern California’s leading for-profit integrated comprehensive healthcare organizations. The company brings more than 20 years of innovation in healthcare delivery and management systems to its integrated network of services, including a medical group, an independent practice association (IPA) and a management services organization. The company’s medical group and IPA together offer patients a continuum of high quality, comprehensive, affordable healthcare, serving more than 200,000 patients in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, with more than 1800 physicians (primary care and specialists) and four urgent care centers. For more information, visit www.lakesidecommunityhealthcare.com.

SOURCE Lakeside Community Healthcare

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