Depression center Apr 05

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Information about Depression center Apr 05

Published on June 26, 2007

Author: Sabatini


Depression in the Media: Strategies for Talking to Reporters U-M Depression Center Colloquium:  Depression in the Media: Strategies for Talking to Reporters U-M Depression Center Colloquium Kara Gavin, M.S. UMHS Public Relations Why does it matter?:  Why does it matter? In today’s information-saturated society, the news media and informal media influence public opinion, patient/parent/clinician behavior and public policy like never before. Who do we need to reach & how?:  Who do we need to reach andamp; how? Journalists and editors The undiagnosed and under-treated 'Empowered' patients, families andamp; advocates Publicity-conscious industry andamp; government Discerning donors hoping to make a difference Clinicians and payors who need evidence-based aid in depression and related disorders All of these audiences need::  All of these audiences need: Information spoken/written in language they can understand andamp; use Credible, independent sources Context and lack of 'hype' Information readily available via accessible channels, especially Web Constant stream of 'newness' Depression in the News: Good News:  Depression in the News: Good News Clinical trial recruitment and results Rx, behavioral, combined, wellness, complementary Genetic findings – differences in 'vulnerability' Neuroscience – differences in 'chemistry' Outcomes andamp; economics - better understanding Celebrities who use fame to bring attention 'Teachable moments' linked to news events Public-service pieces on depressive disorders Slide6:  Therapy Said Good as Drugs for Some Depression Shields Reveals Depression Hell Contents under pressure: Academic communities pay increased attention to graduate students' mental health Steroid addiction a risk for young athletes Withdrawal can cause depression, suicidal behavior Newer Antidepressants Work 2 Ways SSRIs boost serotonin levels on two fronts, study shows The Oprah Winfrey Show, 4/5: Depressed, Mentally Ill andamp; Famous Depression in the News: Bad News:  Depression in the News: Bad News Medication backlash Adolescent SSRI controversy Vague or conflicting data General mistrust of mental health profession High-profile crime/tragic events 'Prozac defense' Suicides Lack of progress on parity policies Individual patients’ 'horror stories' Slide8:  Issaquah schools grapple with suicide Shooter's family wonders about medication effect Weise's aunt says Prozac dose recently upped Red Lake teen wasn't alone in his despair SSRI Data Continue To Confound Researchers Compromise mental health bill advances Legislature rejects mental health bill: Lawmakers cite budgetary concerns Depression in the News: No News:  Depression in the News: No News Wary researchers and clinicians Lack of willing first-person spokespeople Lack of visual appeal limits TV news Missed opportunities to use natural 'news pegs' Recent UMDC Newsmakers:  Recent UMDC Newsmakers Michelle Riba: April Health Minute video andamp; press release on cancer depression, APA lead spokesperson Reg Williams andamp; Bonnie Hagerty: Arch. Psych. Nursing paper (U-M news release) John Greden: US News andamp; World Report grad school mental health Dan Maixner: TV interviews on TMS trial Huda Akil: FGF Pritzker Consortium paper in PNAS (UMHS press release) The Players:  The Players UMDC Clinicians Researchers Administration Outreach staff Affiliates MEDIA Newspapers TV andamp; radio Magazines Health web sites Trade publications PR staff U-M Depression Center’s Roles:  U-M Depression Center’s Roles First, best, only – national leadership Reliable, credible, responsive source of experts for reporters Top-of-mind, top-of-Rolodex (or Google) Continuous stream of research results Useful web site andamp; programs for the public Clinical guidance and training for providers Evidence andamp; advice for payors andamp; policymakers Special Challenges:  Special Challenges Finding patients who will 'tell their story' is difficult because of stigma Media andamp; public perceptions and preconceptions get in the way Retaining credibility means disclosing ties to pharma, and being careful about what you allow in your name Other usual risks and challenges: Talking to reporters takes time Responsiveness and agility in communications are hard work – especially with breaking news Aren’t there risks to media exposure?:  Aren’t there risks to media exposure? Yes. But we risk more if we don’t work with the media! Missed patient care andamp; trial recruitment opportunities Lost chance to reach clinicians andamp; gov’t Incomplete/incorrect public perception of key issues Lack of recognition for U-M achievements What kinds of interactions might you have with PR staff & reporters?:  What kinds of interactions might you have with PR staff andamp; reporters? Press release andamp; interviews on your latest research Publicity for new clinical trial/clinical service Expert opinion on a topic in your sub-specialty Health Minute feature story: video andamp; press release Commenting on someone else’s research Commenting on a societal event, issue or trend Compelling stories about patients Crisis/problem situations What makes a reporter tick?:  What makes a reporter tick? Most reporters serve a general audience Most have no (or basic) medical/scientific knowledge Might ask 'dumb questions' or seek better quotes See themselves as serving the 'public interest' Audience: speaking to 'ordinary people' Reporters are on tight deadlines Respond quickly to requests or tell PR you can’t do it Reporters have little space/time to tell the story Keep your answers short, especially with TV/radio Reporters value their independence You probably won’t see questions or stories ahead of time, but you can ask to verify quotes Timing is everything: The embargo system:  Timing is everything: The embargo system Embargoes are designed to increase media coverage 'Scout’s honor' system: Reporter agrees that if given the news in advance, he/she will not publish it until set date Increases newsworthiness and coverage of research news Gives reporter time to prepare, increases accuracy Journals/professional societies routinely use them Only select reporters get embargoed news Privilege can be revoked if embargo is 'broken' Activity permitted during embargo period: Sharing paper/abstract with reporters, interviews by authors/outside experts, video/audio recording How to talk to a reporter:  How to talk to a reporter Work with PR office to anticipate questions and prepare for interview Media training is available! Have key messages and 'sound bites' in mind Avoid jargon, don’t assume knowledge, speak colloquially and at high school level Except for live TV/radio, it’s OK to repeat answers Forget about 'off the record' Don’t play favorites or ignore 'small' media requests The Role of UMHS PR Staff:  The Role of UMHS PR Staff Seek out news ideas Devise best publicity strategies for stories Write accurate andamp; readable materials Release andamp; 'pitch' stories to media Prepare for crisis and strategic communication Consult with leadership Fill requests for expert sources andamp; patients Counsel patients andamp; families, handle consents Escort cameras in patient areas Report PR results to UMHS community …and it’s all free! UMHS Publicity Vehicles:  UMHS Publicity Vehicles For news media Press releases Health Minute series (TV, radio, print) Pitch calls or e-mails Response to inquiries UMHS, UMMS, UMDC web sites External web sites and e-mail lists For other audiences UMHS web sites Bulletin, Star, E-News, Applause!, M News Now University Record Medicine at Michigan Advertising, brochures (charges may apply) Referring MD fax (small charge) When to contact PR staff:  When to contact PR staff You have an interesting paper or abstract accepted There’s breaking news on a topic in your specialty You’re starting a unique or new clinical service You need patients for a clinic or subjects for a trial A company, journal, society, patient advocacy group or patient contacts you about publicity A reporter calls your office or e-mails you directly Let your support staff know they can run requests through PR first! You have an idea for a Health Minute feature story on a topic important to public health How to handle bad news or crisis:  How to handle bad news or crisis First: Call or page PR staff for help and advice Don’t panic or clam up (ask 'Can I call you back?') Put the best face on information, but don’t distort or omit key facts Try to understand reporter’s perspective, goals and time constraints Empathize with any expressed concerns Refer reporter to other sources and experts for context and balance The End Result:Talking to reporters can be good for you!:  The End Result: Talking to reporters can be good for you! Better public/peer awareness of research results Better public understanding of the importance of depression research Increased chance that your findings will have an impact on future research or clinical practice Visibility within UMHS, U-M andamp; beyond Clinical trial/patient recruitment Funding agency/donor appreciation Unexpected benefits! How to contact UMHS PR:  How to contact UMHS PR Call: 647-1154 (Kara Gavin direct) or 764-2220 (if it’s urgent, ask to speak with my colleagues) E-mail: (or Groupwise) Fax: 615-2169 Page: 9554 (There’s a PR person on-call after hours andamp; on weekends) Submit events at: Fax broadcasts to referring MDs, and Telecare recordings for public calls: Lynn Bryant

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