‘Stay Healthy. Vaccinate.’ targeted toward parents and caretakers

LOS ANGELES – Today the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health launched a multi-media public education campaign urging parents and caretakers to get their whole family vaccinated. The campaign, called “Stay Healthy. Vaccinate.” uses print, television and radio spots, and will provide interactive content and information through Facebook and YouTube.

The campaign also features its own website:  www.vaccinateLA.com.
“Vaccines save thousands of lives each year and are the best way to protect your children and the community against serious diseases such as influenza, measles, polio, and whooping cough (pertussis).  Choosing not to vaccinate your children can have serious consequences,” said Jonathan E. Fielding, MD, MPH, Director of Public Health and Health Officer. “Los Angeles County is currently experiencing the worst epidemic of whooping cough in 60 years, with more than 870 cases last year alone. We encourage everyone to talk to their doctor about the right vaccines for their children and themselves.”

Director of the Department of Public Health Public Health and Health Officer for Los Angeles County, Dr. Jonathan E. Fielding (left), administers an H1-N1 vaccination to Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky when the county launched its first public drive against the deadly virus back in 2009.

A new California school immunization law will take effect on July 1, 2011, requiring all 7th-12th graders in public and private schools to show proof that they have received a pertussis booster (Tdap) shot in order to attend classes in the 2011-12 school year. The pertussis booster (Tdap) shot protects against pertussis, which is sometimes called whooping cough, and two other serious diseases, diphtheria and tetanus.

“Avoid the back-to-school rush, and make sure your children are protected right away,” said Dr. Fielding. “Call your doctor or your primary health care provider to make an appointment as soon as possible, and avoid delays in starting school.”

For more information on the “Stay Healthy. Vaccinate.” campaign or on Tdap and other recommended vaccines, visit http://www.vaccinateLA.com.

About the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health:
The Department of Public Health is committed to protecting and improving the health of the nearly 10 million residents of Los Angeles County.

Through a variety of programs, community partnerships and services, Public Health oversees environmental health, disease control, and community and family health. Public Health comprises more than 4,000 employees and has an annual budget exceeding $750 million.

To learn more about Public Health and its work, please visit http://www.publichealth.lacounty.gov , visit its YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/lapublichealth, or follow them on Twitter: LAPublicHealth.