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Published on April 16, 2015

Health Care and Education Leaders Form "Strive for 95" Coalition to Increase Vaccination Rates in Santa Barbara County

Santa Barbara, Calif. - Cottage Health System, Sansum Clinic, Santa Barbara County Education Office and the Santa Barbara Public Health Department announced today that they will form the "Strive for 95" Coalition with the goal of regaining a 95 percent vaccination rate in our community.

To provide the best protection against infectious disease outbreaks, the vaccination rate should be at least 95 percent. Less people immunized means an increased risk of spreading infectious diseases. In recent years, the immunization rate has fallen to a dangerously low level, and in some schools the rate is as low as 50 percent.

An increase in vaccine refusals has reawakened preventable deadly diseases. The Strive for 95 Coalition aims to raise awareness about what we can do to provide the best immunity for our community.

Today, April 16, a community forum will be held with a distinguished panel of experts from the coalition discussing the importance of vaccinations to protect all of us.

About Cottage Health
The not-for-profit Cottage Health System -- the parent organization of Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital and its associated Cottage Children 's Hospital and Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital, Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital, and Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital -- is guided by a volunteer board of directors from the greater Santa Barbara community. Last year, the Cottage hospitals provided inpatient care for 20,000 people, treated 72,000 patients through their 24-hour emergency departments and helped deliver 2,400 newborns.

About Sansum Clinic
Sansum Clinic is the largest independent nonprofit organization between the Los Angeles Basin and the San Francisco Bay Area. With more than I 80 affiliated physicians, Sansum Clinic provides the full spectrum of healthcare services, from primary care to more than 30 specialties. Sansum Clinic serves more than 150,000 patients (600,000 visits) annually at their patient care facilities between Carpinteria and Santa Maria.

About the Santa Barbara County Education Office
Our office is dedicated to the vision that all students in our county deserve access to services and resources that will meet their educational needs, and help them achieve their fi1ll potential in school and bey ond. We serve 20
school districts and two community colleges throughout Santa Barbara County, impacting 66,000 students and 3,700 educators countywide.

About The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department (PHD) improves the health of our communities by preventing disease, promoting wellness and ensuring access to needed health care. PHD has Health Care Centers that serve residents with Medi-Cal, Medicare and those without insurance. PHD also has programs that serve the entire community by preventing epidemics and the spread of disease, protecting against environmental hazards, preventing injuries, encouraging healthy behaviors and ensuring that health services are available for those who need them.

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Media and Public Relations Contact

Maria Zate, Manager of Public Relations

Phone: 805-879-8986

Email: mzate@sbch.org