Policies for Interviews and Escorts

Our media relations team is available to respond to questions, arrange interviews and assist in your news reporting.

CONTACT US

Media questions and requests can be directed to news@uwhealth.org, to our main office line 608-262-6343, or to one of our list of media professionals.

HOSPITAL ESCORTS

Our media relations team is available to assist with news inquiries involving UW Health, including its medical center, clinics, patients and health-care providers. The health system, however, is bound by federal and state regulations and policies regarding public access to our patients and patient care areas. All media visits to the hospital, either with a patient or member of our UW Health staff, must be arranged through the media team at UW Health. 

INTERVIEWS AND STUDIO OPTIONS

Our media relations team can help arrange television or audio interviews. UW’s on-site broadcast studio in 1149 Grainger Hall — located just north of the entrance on Brooks Street — is convenient for live or taped interviews. Fiber optic and satellite capabilities allow your station live or taped interviews for your news broadcast.

The studio is fully equipped with broadcast lighting and a designated robotic camera that is operated remotely from VideoLink’s broadcast center. The camera has pan/tilt capabilities, providing the flexibility of a one-on-one interview, or even an interview with two experts.

PATIENT PRIVACY AND HIPAA

To protect the privacy of all our patients and their families, a member of the media relations staff must accompany reporters, film crews and photographers while on our hospital campus.

Written consent from the patient or patient’s legal representative must be obtained through the media team prior to any interview, filming, or photo-shoot taking place. 

PATIENT UPDATES

Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996, we cannot give any more information than a one-word condition on a patient’s medical status. However, the reporter must provide the patient’s first and last name to the public relations representative BEFORE the following descriptors* are provided: 

Critical: Vital signs are unstable and not within normal limits. Patient may be unconscious. Indicators are unfavorable.

Serious: Vital signs may be unstable and not within normal limits. Patient is acutely ill. Indicators are questionable.

Fair: Vital signs are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious, but may be uncomfortable. Indicators are favorable.

Good: Vital signs are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious and comfortable. Indicators are excellent.

Hospitals cannot share information with the media on the specifics about sudden, violent or accidental deaths, as well as deaths from natural causes, without the permission of the decedent’s personal representative.

*Please note: Under HIPAA guidelines, patients can choose to “opt out” of providing any information on their hospital stay. The patient has the option to expressly state that he or she does not want information released—including confirmation of his or her presence in our hospitals.