UCLA experts: The flu

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Flu activity has been widespread across the country in early 2018, and reports have emerged that the vaccine for the 2017–18 flu season is not very effective. UCLA has experts available for interviews on the influenza virus and vaccine. 

Click the expert’s name for a more detailed biography and contact information.

Reducing the likelihood of infection

Dr. Joseph Ladapo

Ladapo is an associate professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and is board-certified in internal medicine. His primary research interests include assessing the cost-effectiveness of diagnostic technologies. He can discuss how to reduce the likelihood of flu infection, as well as how to recover as quickly as possible from the flu.

Caring for children

Dr. Deborah Lehman

Lehman is an infectious diseases specialist and a professor of clinical pediatrics at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. She can discuss the merits of the flu vaccine, even if it’s not 100 percent effective, and the signs that a child needs immediate medical care, such as unusual sleepiness or mental changes.

Impact on health

Dr. Tara Vijayan 

Vijayan is an assistant professor of medicine in the division of infectious diseases at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Her interests include medical education and infectious diseases in marginalized and underserved communities. She is an authority on how the flu virus spreads and its effects on the human body.

How hospitals and ERs respond

Dr. Mark Morocco

Morocco is an emergency room physician at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and clinical professor of emergency medicine in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. An oft-quoted expert on emergency medicine, Morocco can discuss how medical professionals and institutions respond to infectious diseases, such as influenza, Ebola and West Nile virus, as well as emergencies like natural disasters, wildfires and mass shootings. He is associate residency director of emergency medicine at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.