If you are contacted by the media, please call us at (608) 262-6343 or (608) 262-2122 after office hours. Web: uwhealth.org; click on “News”
UW Health Marketing and Communications routinely works with news media in search of experts to interview for stories not generated by this office. UW Hospitals and Clinics, UW Medical Foundation, the UW School of Medicine and Public Health and the UW-Madison Schools of Nursing and Pharmacy enjoy a
strong reputation as a source of experts willing to work with news media and meet their deadlines. Your cooperation can help ensure that reputation—and the positive attention that accompanies it—continues.
Marketing and Communications has an experienced media team representative assigned to your specific area. To meet with your representative, suggest a news story or inquire about our other communication services, please contact us. Advance notice of important journal articles, research findings, new procedures and interesting and unique patient stories helps our office get the news to the media in a timely
and efficient manner.
UW Health Media Relations Programs
Each year, UW Health Marketing and Communications generates extensive local, statewide and national news coverage for UW Health, the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, the UW Carbone Cancer Center and the UW Schools of Nursing and Pharmacy. Marketing and Communications reaches and works with the media through several programs designed to communicate the varied activities at these institutions. These services include:
Science/Feature news releases
Produced regularly and working in concert with the UW-Madison Communications office, these are often timed to coincide with embargoed journal articles and breaking news.
A dedicated media team offers individualized pitching of stories and experts through personal contact with news media.
News releases sent out upon request to specific media are an excellent tool to help with clinical study recruitment.
Faculty, staff and student achievements announced to pertinent media and hometown newspapers upon request.
Thousands of visitors from Wisconsin and around the world—including, increasingly, members of the media—click on UW Health’s public Web site, maintained by the office of the Web Center. The site features dedicated sections for news releases, videos and publications.
Video Support/Find a Doctor
A video news team is available to produce video profiles of key physicians and care providers, background video for media and special video projects based on identified strategic priorities. Our office works with the Web Center to add video to uwhealth.org.
Printed three times a year and mailed to more than 500,000 homes in Dane County and the Fox Valley, UW Health’s consumer newsletter delivers news on programs and procedures at UW Hospitals and Clinics.
When The Media Calls…
Please contact Communications at (608) 262-6343 or your assigned media representative directly. The media team can help coordinate interviews, examine potential problem areas, assist with handling controversial topics and serve as the media’s contact.
Remember that reporters often work on tight deadlines, and rarely have the luxury of advance notice on breaking stories. While our office will make every effort to avoid making urgent media requests, immediate responses will at times be required.
If reporters wish to interview and/or photograph patients, in the interest of observing patient privacy laws, it’s vital that you contact Communications to obtain a patient’s written consent before the interview begins.
During The Interview
- Always tell the truth.
- Never go “off the record.” Remember, the interview doesn’t end until the reporter leaves the room. If you don’t want something in print or on the air, don’t say it.
- Avoid “no comment.” This almost always comes across negatively.
- Avoid “medicalese.” Use short words, short sentences and short descriptions. Remember that television and radio reporters are generally looking for 10- to 20- second sound bites.
- Avoid humor, as it is easily misunderstood.
- Be aware of body language and maintain eye contact with the interviewer.
- Be sure you understand the question before answering. Never guess or speculate.
- Correct any misinformation before answering a question.
After The Interview
- Remember that reporters generally do not allow review of their stories before publication.
- Return follow-up calls from the reporter or your media team representative promptly.
- Occasionally, your initial interview will trigger additional media requests. For major news stories, Public Affairs can develop strategies to limit demands on your time.
- Bringing our Stories to the World
UW Hospitals and Clinics, UW Medical Foundation, the UW School of Medicine and Public Health and the UW-Madison Schools of Nursing and Pharmacy enjoy a national reputation for excellence in patient care and pioneering research. Because of this, it remains increasingly important for staff and faculty members to be aware not just of the importance of communicating with the news media, but how to handle it efficiently and professionally when called upon to do so. Each media query is an opportunity to communicate to the public, potential students and patients, benefactors and government officials about the excellent work being conducted at our organization.
Through working with the news media, we can let the world know about the amazing things we accomplish at UW Health each and every day.