“You can’t just have the vaccine in stock and wait for people to show up. That’s why we reach out to let people know their children can be vaccinated at any time when our clinics are open.”
(Redlands, Calif.) Dr. Albert Arteaga, MD, CEO of LaSalle Medical Associates, says that all LaSalle clinics have started delivering the Covid-19 vaccine to children.
“We have the Covid19 vaccines in stock, and we have completed training our people on dosages, proper delivery, and administration,” says Dr. Arteaga. “We also have started an active outreach campaign to all of our patients to let them know they can bring their children in to get vaccinated.”
LaSalle Medical Associates has been ahead of the curve for vaccine administration for decades, particularly for pediatric illnesses. “I remember 25 years ago we thought childhood vaccinations must have been around 100 percent. We were very far off. The national statistics came out saying compliance was only 30–40 percent. At LaSalle we were doing a lot better, around 60 percent, but that still did not meet our standards, and that’s why we have been so focused on outreach ever since,” says Dr. Arteaga.
Dr. Arteaga adds, “Since the government started compiling records and keeping track of the percentage of people getting vaccinated, we now have a much more accurate picture of how effective vaccination programs are.”
Being proactive leads to higher vaccine compliance. Calling parents to let them know they should bring in their youngsters to get vaccinated means that prevention is likely to be a lot more effective.
Dr. Arteaga also reveals his personal shot-administration secret: “Children typically don’t like getting a shot. So, I tell them this shot is painless. But if they do feel pain, I can always give them a second shot for the pain. I’ve never had a child ask for that second shot.”
A nurse or physician’s bedside manner means a lot, particularly with children. Keeping things light and avoiding a stern attitude helps the entire experience go down more easily for both the patient and the caregiver.
LaSalle’s clinics have been recognized in the past for their well-above-average vaccination delivery, recording rates above 80 or even 90 percent compliance for flu shots, for example. Dr. Arteaga says, “It’s all because we really push for people to care for themselves.”
Dr. Arteaga also tackles the myth that if people are feeling ill, they should not get a vaccine shot. “Not true,” says the doctor, “unless you’re quite ill. If you have a cold, the sniffles, whatever, it’s perfectly safe and advisable to get your Covid 19 Vaccine.”
Dr. Arteaga restates his mantra that it’s not enough to have vaccines on the shelf. They need to be available during all regularly open clinic hours, and that’s the longstanding LaSalle policy.
LaSalle Medical Associates, Inc., clinics accept Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Molina, Care 1st, Health Net, and Inland Empire Health Plan coverage, as well as Medicare and Medi-Cal.
For more information about LaSalle Medical Associates, Inc call the office closest to you: Fontana (909) 823-4454; San Bernardino 17th Street (909) 887-6494; San Bernardino Mt. Vernon Ave. (909) 884-9091; Rialto (855) 349-6019; Hesperia (760) 947-2161; and Victorville (855) 349-6019.