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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 18, 2013 | Ari Bloomekatz
Los Angeles County health officials on Wednesday began offering free meningitis vaccinations to low-income and uninsured residents while downplaying fears about a potential outbreak of the disease. "We really sympathize with the heightened concern related to meningococcal disease," said Dr. Jonathan Fielding, the county's top health officer. "We hope that by sharing what we know, we'll alleviate some of the anxiety that has surfaced over the last several days. " Fielding held a news conference only days after the sudden death of Brett Shaad, a 33-year-old West Hollywood lawyer who was diagnosed with the disease.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 15, 2013 | By Anna Gorman
Dozens of men lined up Monday morning at an AIDS Healthcare Foundation pharmacy in West Hollywood to get a free meningitis vaccine, days after a local man died from the disease. Allen Smith, a 21-year-old dance student, said he had a weak immune system and wanted to make sure that he was vaccinated to protect himself from the disease. After hearing about the death of Brett Shaad, a young lawyer who had contracted meningitis, Smith said he didn't want to take any chances. "It reminded everyone how short life really is," Smith said as he waited for the shot.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 15, 2013 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Reacting to the death of a young West Hollywood lawyer over the weekend and growing concerns about the possible spread of bacterial meningitis, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation gave hundreds of free vaccinations to visitors who showed up Monday at its facilities. The organization, which initially ordered about 1,000 doses and plans to acquire more, said it would continue providing the shots as needed. Brett Shaad, 33, contracted meningitis and died several days later after attending a gathering of gay men in Palm Springs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 15, 2013 | By Los Angeles Times Staff
The AIDS Healthcare Foundation will offer free meningitis vaccines starting Monday. The move comes just days after a West Hollywood man died from the disease. Anyone who might have been exposed to the disease or might be at risk should to make plans to receive the vaccine, officials say. Worry over a meningitis outbreak started last week after 33-year-old Brett Shaad, a West Hollywood lawyer, died of the disease on Friday. Shaad became critically ill shortly after he attended an annual Easter weekend gathering of gay men in Palm Springs, according to the foundation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 14, 2013 | By Kurt Streeter
Responding to fears of a deadly meningitis outbreak among gay men, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation announced Sunday that it will begin offering free vaccines to help counter a spread of the potentially deadly disease. Worry over a meningitis outbreak started last week after 33-year-old Brett Shaad, a West Hollywood lawyer, died of the disease on Friday. Shaad became critically ill shortly after he attended an annual Easter weekend gathering of gay men in Palm Springs, according to the foundation.
NEWS
April 2, 2013 | By Karen Kaplan
Staph infections remain a significant problem for hospital patients, and scientists are trying to develop vaccines to prevent Staphylococcus aureus bacteria from establishing itself in vital areas like the heart, lungs or blood. But it's turning out to be a difficult task: A promising vaccine intended to protect heart-surgery patients from staph infections worked no better than a placebo, a new study reported . Making matters worse, patients who developed staph infections despite getting the vaccine were more likely to die than infected patients who got the placebo, the study found.
NEWS
April 1, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
Once upon a time, not too terribly long ago, getting the chicken pox was practically a rite of passage for kids. But now, nearly 20 years after approval of a vaccine for the varicella virus, which causes the itchy illness, chicken pox is a rarity. A new study conducted by researchers at Kaiser Permanente in Northern California and published online Monday in the journal Pediatrics confirms that the vaccine is, indeed, effective -- reducing cases of chicken pox in one large cohort of kids as much as tenfold over a 14-year study period.
NEWS
March 19, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
The federal government must perform more tests on adults before it can ethically move forward with controversial anthrax vaccine trials in children, members of a federal bioethics panel said.  "The safety of our children is paramount, and we have to get this right," said Amy Gutmann, chairwoman of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues , in a phone call with reporters on Monday. "The commission concluded many steps would have to be taken before pediatric anthrax vaccine trials should be considered.
NEWS
March 18, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
Parents forgo vaccines for their teenage kids for a number of reasons, researchers said Monday in a paper reporting findings from the annual National Immunization Survey of Teens, which was published in the journal Pediatrics.  That might mean that public health agencies need to try new things to get immunizations on target to prevent spread of the human papilloma virus, the cause of cervical and other cancers. Overall, immunization rates among teenagers are on the way up, the Pediatrics study noted.
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