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for Prevention

Promoting Health Through Prevention in Los Angeles County

 Volume 8, Number 5    September-October 2018
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The Evolving Science and Policy of Cannabis: What Health Professionals Need to Know

As cannabis use increases in Los Angeles County, it is important that health care providers ask about cannabis use and be prepared to have informed discussions with their patients. This article is designed to educate health care providers on the most clinically relevant cannabis issues and covers topics such as medical and legal considerations, drug interactions, health effects, and patient education. READ MORE


Cannabis Supplements

Screening and Referral for Cannabis Misuse and Cannabis Use Disorders

Due to the high prevalence of cannabis use and the significant risk of developing problem use, clinicians are encouraged to screen patients for cannabis use and refer for substance use disorder treatment when appropriate. READ MORE


Cannabis Toxicity

Clinicians should be familiar with the causes, signs, and treatment of cannabis toxicity given the higher concentration of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in many newer cannabis plants and the wide availability of cannabis in LA County. In addition, providers should be prepared to counsel patients about prevention. READ MORE


Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women and Cannabis

The increasing use of cannabis among women who are pregnant or breastfeeding is a significant public health concern. Evidence suggests that cannabis use in pregnancy or while breastfeeding may have adverse effects on the fetus and child. Pregnant and lactating women and those contemplating pregnancy should be advised to avoid cannabis use. READ MORE


Youth and Cannabis

While it is illegal in California for anyone under 21 years of age to smoke, consume, buy, or possess non-medicinal cannabis, a significant proportion of adolescents report using cannabis. It is essential for healthcare providers to advise parents/caregivers and youth of the detrimental effects of cannabis on the developing brain. READ MORE


Report Released: Recent Trends in Adult Use of Marijuana

This report shows trends in self-reported marijuana use rates among adults in LA County ages 18 and older in the years leading up to the November 2016 passage of Proposition 64, which legalized the cultivation, sale, and use of marijuana for adults in California. READ MORE


Preventing Influenza in Los Angeles County: Time to Start Vaccinating

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released this season's influenza vaccine recommendations and health care providers are asked to begin vaccinating now. This brief summarizes the latest recommendations for vaccination in LA County, including the local Health Officer Order for annual influenza vaccination or masking of health care personnel. READ MORE



Brief Updates from DPH

  • New Health Officer: Muntu Davis, MD, MPH was appointed as Los Angeles County’s Health Officer. Press Release.
  • West Nile Virus and Other Arboviral Diseases Epidemiology Reports available: Sign up to receive disease updates. Current Issue Past Issues.
  • Influenza Watch Reports to begin soon: Sign up to receive updates for LA County throughout the flu season. Past Issues
  • Parkinson’s Disease Reporting to CDPH: Under California law, health care providers diagnosing or treating Parkinson's disease patients are now required to report each case directly to the California Department of Public Health. LAC DPH does not accept reports. Parkinson’s Disease Reporting.
  • Center for Health Equity Action Plan: Health care and community stakeholders are invited to provide input on the LA County Center for Health Equity Action Plan at an upcoming community forum or by email.
  • Coalition for a Tobacco Free Los Angeles County Meeting: Wednesday, September 19, 2018, 10:00 am at the California Endowment. The agenda includes a presentation of research on the health effects of e-cigarettes and a discussion of Coalition bylaws.Email: AValdovinos@ph.lacounty.gov.
  • Immunization Coalition of Los Angeles County Meeting: Tuesday, October 30, 2018, 10:00 am at the California Endowment. The agenda includes a presentation on best practices for improving adult immunization coverage levels. Information and registration.
  • Work for the Department of Public Health! LAC DPH is recruiting for multiple physician positions, including for a Physician Specialist to oversee the Healthcare Outreach Unit at the Acute Communicable Disease Control (ACDC) Program. Physician Job Opportunities website.


Resources For Providers and Patients

Take advantage of a variety of clinician and patient educational resources including new provider toolkits on pertussis, measles, and mumps; respiratory disease prevention flyers; and a poster alerting emergency department and other health care providers of possible contamination of black tar heroin with Clostridium botulinum. These resources are available online and are free of charge. VIEW LIST



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Latest LAHAN Health Alert
October 18 Notification: National Increase in Reports of Suspected Acute Flaccid Myelitis Cases
October 12 Update: Outbreaks of Flea-Borne Typhus in Los Angeles County
October 4 Alert: Outbreak of Flea-Borne Typhus in Downtown Los Angeles
October 1 Advisory: Human Case of St. Louis Encephalitis in Los Angeles County
September 7 Advisory: Advice to Clinicians about Leptospirosis in U.S. Travelers Returning from Northern Israel


Description and link to Public Health Professionals Web Portal


Rx for Prevention, 2018

Published: September 13, 2018