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Protect Yourself From Flu

Last updated: January 19, 2018, 12:14 pm

California and Contra Costa are seeing high levels of flu activity. We remind the community to take the following steps to prevent the spread of flu.

  • Get your flu vaccine
  • Clean hands often with soap and water or with hand sanitizer
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes
  • Stay home when you’re sick

People with flu like symptoms should call their health plan's Advice Nurses to get help with self-care or to help them decide if they need to visit an urgent care clinic, make an appointment with their health care provider or go to an emergency room. Rarely is emergency room needed for flu or respiratory issues.

Contra Costa Health Plan members and Contra Costa residents who do not have health coverage can call 1-877-661-6230 and select option 1 to speak to an Advice Nurse.

See more information about flu and flu prevention.

Latest flu information

Advice Nurse Flu Flyer

Press Release

Contra Costa STEMI System Topping National Response Times

April 27, 2010

Archived. This is an older press release from 2010 and may not contain the latest information. Please view our current press releases for 2018 items.

Working together as a multi-agency system to save the lives of high-risk heart attack victims, Contra Costa's hospitals and emergency medical service providers have exceeded all national benchmarks for response times. The system responded to 200 calls in its first year and is working to further improve its heart attack response.

The county's STEMI System, overseen by Contra Costa Health Services' Emergency Medical Services Division (EMS), enables paramedics to rapidly identify and transport high-risk heart attack victims to one of six specially equipped hospitals, known as STEMI Receiving Centers.

In the coming months, EMS plans further improvements to the county's STEMI System enabling paramedics to send diagnostic information to a STEMI Receiving Center electronically from the field.

"We are piloting a wireless system to send 12-lead EKG data from an ambulance to the Receiving Center's emergency room," Assistant EMS Director Patricia Frost said. "While paramedics focus on care for the patient, the EKG data is securely sent to a hospital so it can prepare to receive the patient."

In 2009, the county STEMI System averaged 87 minutes from the time 911 is called to the time lifesaving treatment is provided at a Receiving Center. EMS Medical Director Dr. Joseph Barger said not calling 911 could delay treatment for hours, leading to brain and heart damage.

"A STEMI heart attack is an especially dangerous heart attack," Dr. Barger said. "In these cases, treatment is most successful when given within 90 to 120 minutes of the first sign of chest pain."

Frost said all of the patients who came through the county's STEMI System in 2009 received care within the mandated 90 minutes of arriving at a Receiving Center. She noted that 88% of those patients received the lifesaving care in less than 75 minutes.

"Our county is fortunate to have such a strong and dedicated network of emergency medical providers," Frost said. "The tireless work of our partners has improved cardiac care in Contra Costa."

The six STEMI Receiving Centers in Contra Costa County are Doctors Medical Center San Pablo, John Muir Medical Center in Concord and Walnut Creek, Kaiser Permanente in Walnut Creek, San Ramon Regional Medical Center and Sutter Delta Medical Center in Antioch.

A complete 2009 STEMI System Performance Report is available online at

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Press Contact
  • Patricia Frost
  • 925-313-9554