Resources for Journalists

Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin are proud of the role they play in the health care of the community. As we engage in that role, we share our exciting story with the people of Wisconsin and northern Illinois with the help of another key member of the community — the news media.

How Froedtert, Medical College Work Together

The Froedtert (pronounced "fray-dert") Hospital Public Relations staff and the Medical College of Wisconsin’s Public Affairs department work together to coordinate media coverage for Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin, and have delineated responsibilities for media relations to increase our responsiveness to the media and avoid duplication.

Stories related to patient care, new procedures, treatments and technology are handled by the Froedtert Hospital staff. The Medical College of Wisconsin staff handles stories involving research, education, faculty expert opinions and clinical trials. Call 414-456-4700 to reach the Medical College’s Public Affairs office.

Guidelines for Reporters

The Froedtert Hospital Media Relations team is committed to providing excellent service to media representatives while respecting patient privacy. We understand you have deadlines and will do our best to respond quickly.

We’re guided in our role by applicable regulations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and hospital policy. Wisconsin Statutes 146.81 to 146.84 and the Wisconsin Hospital Association Health Care Media Guide are the basis for media relations policy at Froedtert Hospital.

Patient Condition Information

Please contact Media Relations to request patient conditions. You must provide the patient's first and last name, correctly spelled, and, if possible, the patient's date of birth. In most cases, we will be able to give a one-word condition or indicate that the person has been treated and released or has died. We don’t use the term "stable" as it only refers to a patient's vital signs. We do not provide the time and date of a patient's death or release.

These are the conditions we provide and their definitions:

  • Satisfactory: Vital signs are within normal limits. The patient is conscious and functioning. Usually given when a patient is on a hospital inpatient floor.
  • Serious: Vital signs may be outside normal limits and treatments are being directed toward assisting return of some vital signs to normal limits. There may be signs of organ system instability and mechanical systems may be necessary. Usually given when a patient is ready for release to a hospital inpatient floor.
  • Critical: Life- or limb-threatening condition. Vital signs may or may not be stable. Usually given when a patient is in an intensive care unit.

Patients or next of kin acting in their behalf may decline to authorize disclosure of information. In those cases, we cannot provide any information about the patient.

Information about a patient beyond a one-word condition, interviews, statements, photographs or video must be approved in writing in advance by the patient or next of kin acting in the patient’s behalf.

We cannot provide information about prisoner patients unless approved by the appropriate law enforcement agency.

Interviews, Photography, Film or Videotaping

We welcome media professionals seeking story sources and who want to interview patients, physicians, and hospital staff, or visit our facilities in that context. Please contact Media Relations to make these arrangements. Advance notice of on-site interviews is necessary so we can schedule the appropriate sources, obtain patient consent, notify the patient care areas involved and arrange a suitable location. For our patients' safety and privacy, media representatives on Froedtert Hospital premises must be escorted at all times by a Froedtert Media Relations team member or designated representative.

All photography, filming or videotaping on the Froedtert Hospital campus and in clinical areas requires an escort by a designated Froedtert Hospital representative. In working with you to arrange these activities, we’ll strive for times and locations that are least likely to disrupt patient care and privacy, and hospital operations.

Stand-Ups/Live Broadcasts

Media representatives may conduct stand-ups and live broadcasts in the vicinity of Froedtert Hospital on the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center campus. During business hours, advance notice to the Froedtert Media Relations team is recommended. Reporters and media vehicles must stay off hospital property unless they are accompanied by a Media Relations representative.

A suggested site for stand-up and live shots is the intersection of N. 92nd Street and Connell Avenue, which offers a view of Froedtert Hospital to the east.