Guidelines for Reporters
Patient Condition Reports:
Ascension Wisconsin’s Public and Community Relations staff is the primary contact during regular business hours Monday-Friday (8a-5p) for patient condition reports. After hours inquiries at some facilities can be requested by calling the hospital switchboard and asking for the Nursing Supervisor.
Complete list of Facility Contacts for Patient Condition Reports
Policies concerning patient condition reports are in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Under this policy, any member of the news media requesting information on a patient condition must provide the patient’s first and last name before the release of any patient information. If the patient is a minor child, authorization to release condition information must be confirmed by a parent or legal guardian.
Ascension uses one-word condition descriptions when reporting a patient’s condition:
Undetermined: Patient is Awaiting Assessment.
Good: Vital Signs are stable and within normal limits; patient is conscious and comfortable; indicators are excellent.
Fair: Vital signs are stable and within normal limits; 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.
Treated/Released: A hospital may disclose that a patient has been treated and released, but may not disclose where the patients was released to.
Treated/Transferred: A hospital may disclose that a patient has been treated and transferred to another facility, but may not disclose the name or location of facility.
Media Policy Statement:
It is the policy of Ascension Wisconsin to work cooperatively with the media to actively place stories about programs, events, activities, and health related news for the general public and for the health care industry. We recognize the need to respond to media inquiries and provide information through our expert resources.
Interview, Photography and Live Shot Requests
Ascension Wisconsin’s Public Relations and Communications team are a useful resource for members of the media. All requests for information, interviews or photographs with employees or programs of Ascension must be submitted and approved by the Public and Communications Manager at the requested location.
Upon request, patient interviews can be made available but require approval in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
In the best interest of facility and patient safety and security, our policy requires Ascension staff to accompany the news media at all times in Ascension facilities or while on the property.
Television or radio outlets wishing to conduct live shots or remote broadcasts on Ascension property must speak with a Public Relations representative for permission and require advance notice to ensure proper accommodations.
We want to be a good partner with you in educating the public about medical breakthroughs, health trends, and general preventive and wellness information. As we are a large, complex organization, we also want members of the media to know whom to contact in various situations.
Please Note: The contacts listed below are for media-related inquiries only.
Ascension Wisconsin Spokesperson
Chief Marketing & Communications Officer
Office: 414-465-3712 / 920-628-9211
System or Business-Related News
Senior Director, Public & Community Relations
Central/Northern Wisconsin Facilities Contact:
Manager, Public and Community Relations
About Ascension Wisconsin
In Wisconsin, Ascension (ascension.org/Wisconsin) operates 24 hospitals and hundreds of related healthcare facilities that together employ more than 23,500 associates. Across the state, Ascension provided more than $230 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2016. Serving Wisconsin for 169 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, operating 2,500 sites of care – including 141 hospitals and more than 30 senior living facilities – in 24 states and the District of Columbia.
Ascension (ascension.org) is a faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to transformation through innovation across the continuum of care. As the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, Ascension is committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. In FY2016, Ascension provided more than $1.8 billion in care of persons living in poverty and other community benefit programs. Ascension includes approximately 150,000 associates and 36,000 aligned providers. Ascension’s Healthcare Division operates 2,500 sites of care – including 141 hospitals and more than 30 senior living facilities – in 24 states and the District of Columbia, while its Solutions Division provides a variety of services and solutions including physician practice management, venture capital investing, investment management, biomedical engineering, facilities management, clinical care management, information services, risk management, and contracting through Ascension’s own group purchasing organization.