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Reliable Health Information and Resources

Where to Turn for Reliable Health Information and Resources

With so many options, it can be challenging to determine which health resources and information are trustworthy. Finding reliable health information can be a daunting task for anyone looking to improve their health or newly diagnosed patients and caregivers looking for specific information about a condition.

The Health Library & Resource Center at El Camino Health provides free information and resources to help community members make important health decisions.

The center is staffed by medical librarians who offer free, personalized consultations to help obtain information needed to understand and address a specific condition. While internet searches at home can often be overwhelming, health librarians can help figure out which articles and information might be most relevant and helpful. The library collection includes a large assortment of patient-friendly books, newsletters which can be helpful for community members and patients, as well as standard medical journals and textbooks to help better understand conditions, information on clinical trials and much more. Research help is available in person at our Los Gatos and Mountain View campuses, over the phone or by email (health_lib@elcaminohealth.org). 

The center also provides access to health services that are important to the wellness and prevention of illness to the entire community. Community members can sign-up for the following free consultations with health care professionals:

  • Blood Pressure Screenings – A registered nurse provides free blood pressure monitoring every Friday morning from 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. (except holidays) on the first floor of the main hospital building on the Mountain View campus, next to the Health Library & Resource Center. No appointment is needed.
  • Ask the Pharmacist – A hospital pharmacist will review medications, over-the-counter drugs, herbal supplements and vitamins in relation to a diagnosis, as well as answer questions during a 30 minute personalized consultation. Community members will learn proper use of medications and possible duplications, interactions and side effects. Appointments at our Mountain View campus are available Mondays starting at 1 p.m.
  • Consult the Dietitian – A registered dietitian will meet in a private consultation to review current diet and evaluate nutritional status. The dietitian will help identify personal nutrition goals and create a plan to reach them, help plan meals at home and while dining out, answer questions about vitamins and other dietary supplements, and provide recipes or modify "old favorites" to help meet your nutritional goals. An appointment is required, but there is no fee for this service offered at our Mountain View campus. Thirty-minute appointments in English are available the first and third Friday of each month between 12 - 2 p.m. A Chinese speaking dietitian is available on the second Wednesday of each month from 10 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and the second Friday of each month from 12 - 2:30 p.m. Call 650-988-3234 to schedule an appointment with a Chinese speaking dietitian.
  • Advance Healthcare Directive – A professionally trained counselor can help individuals complete the California Advance Healthcare Directive form. During a 60 minute consultation, community members will get answers to questions about the process; clarification on the medical and legal language; understand the importance of selecting a healthcare agent and assistance in completing the appropriate forms. Appointments are required.
  • Eldercare services – An eldercare counselor familiar with all the organizations and programs serving older adults in the local area can provide a link to resources that are affordable, efficient and proven. Eldercare counselors can help with finding home care, geriatric care management or other services to maintain independence or quality of life, determining what Medicare or other insurance will cover; finding affordable and suitable assisted living or long-term care options; finding the right professional caregiver or adult day care; grief counseling or end-of-life decisions; researching clinical studies and new treatments or developments; and any other unmet need. Eldercare counselors work by email (caregiver.assistance@elcaminohealth.org), phone or mail.
  • Medicare Consultations – Free health insurance counseling is available for older adults to help make informed decisions about health insurance. Counselors can help with information about Medicare; explanations and comparisons of Medicare supplemental and Medicare Advantage plans; reviews of benefits and rights, and advice on how to appeal denial of coverage; completing claims and appeals; and understanding hospital or doctor bills related to Medicare. Appointments are required.

Appointments for all Health Library & Resource Center services offered can be made by calling 650-940-7210.

Learn more about the services offered through the Health Library & Resource Center

 

This article first appeared in the March 2020 edition of the HealthPerks newsletter.

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