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Public Relations Contacts
All media inquiries, including information requests and interview arrangements, please contact:
- DeAnn Hecht, 701.780.2356
- Victoria Birkeland, 701.780.1514
- Lindsey Reznicek, 701.780.2444
- Angie Laxdal, 701.780.1641
- Jessica Butler, 701.780.1608
- Annie Berge, 701.780.1642
Although Altru Health System is not obligated by law to release any patient-related or other information to news media, Altru wishes to maintain a positive understanding and assure consistency, accuracy and fairness of communications. Our first responsibility, however, is to protect the patient's right to privacy.
All news media inquires must be initiated solely through Altru Health System's Corporate Development. Corporate Development oversees all interviews, photograph/filming requests, etc. Altru staff must also coordinate and be present at all interviews, photographing, and filming. Altru's Corporate Development team requests advanced notice from the media of interview and photography/filming requests. By receiving advanced notice, we can ensure that sufficient information and photo opportunities will be available. This also enables us to receive appropriate consent forms.
The patient's primary doctor has the privilege to decline permission to interview and/or photograph a patient if they feel it would interfere with the patient's well being or their care. Often these circumstances are temporary, and normally approval is given as the patient's condition changes. In addition, a patient or immediate family member must provide written consent for an interview.
Due to Altru's concern for quality health care and protecting the privacy of our patients, there are areas that are protected under law, HIPAA. Therefore, news media must make a request to be on our property each time they are here. Media does have the right to be on sidewalks surrounding our facilities.
The following terms shall be used by the authorized spokesperson to describe the patient's condition:
- SATISFACTORY - Vital signs are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious but may be uncomfortable. Indicators are favorable.
- GUARDED - Vital signs are stable and within normal limits, but monitoring is advisable. Patient is conscious but may be uncomfortable. Indicators are favorable.
- SERIOUS - Vital signs may be unstable and not within normal limits. Patient is acutely ill. Indicators are questionable.
- CRITICAL - Vital signs are unstable and not within normal limits. Patient may be unconscious. Indicators are unfavorable.
- DEAD - The death of a patient can be reported by the system after the next of kin or legal authorities have been notified. Information regarding the cause of death must originate from the patient's physician or coroner. Its release must be approved by a member of the immediate family or an appropriate representative.