Information for Reporters

News media inquiries, including requests for patient conditions, must be directed to the Hennepin Healthcare Public Relations Department. 

Contact: Christine Hill, Sr. Media Relations Specialist
612.873.5719 (desk) 612.919.8711 (cell) 612.421.0130 (new media pager)

News media queries and requests for permission to film or photograph any area of the hospital must be directed to the Public Relations Department by calling 612-919-8711 or the Media Pager at 612-421-0130. Patient information is protected by State statutes and HIPAA.

12-3-2020: Important notice to reporters
The health of our patients, staff and their families is always our first priority at Hennepin Healthcare. During this COVID-19 pandemic we have faced numerous new challenges, including the difficult decision to limit visitors.

We see firsthand the importance of loved ones being at the bedside to support patients. That was the difficult part of the decision – but it’s also what made it very clear. We didn’t want to risk more people becoming ill and contributing to COVID spread in the community, which in turn could have even more of a disastrous effect on the health of our employees and our ability to staff beds to care for patients.

Every effort is being made to provide communication between patients and their families when in-person contact cannot take place. We believe that visiting a loved one in the hospital is something that should be reserved for family members. For that reason, until our visitor restrictions are lifted, we are not able to allow media access to patient care areas of the hospital.

We do understand the impact reporting on the COVID-19 situation in hospitals can have when consumers see and hear stories from the frontline. We will continue to make our medical experts available for interviews and our PR team will do anything we can to help you with your story coverage. This includes having a collection of images and B-roll footage of areas inside the hospital for you to use upon request. 

Our first priority is the health – including the emotional health – of our patients, staff and their families. As soon as the hospital returns to its standard visitor’s policy and family members can visit patients without restrictions, we will resume accommodating access requests from reporters and photographers.

Medical resources for your stories
Hennepin Healthcare has nationally recognized medical experts available for interviews on a wide variety of topics. Call Christine Hill at 612-919-8711 to schedule an interview. Every effort will be made to arrange for one of our experts to answer your questions or provide background information for your assignment. (Please note that patient care is our first priority, and occasionally our physicians’ schedules will not allow for interviews.)

Patient conditions
We understand that you have deadlines, and every effort will be made to get the information you need as soon as possible. Please remember that all requests for patient conditions must include the first and last name of the patient.

Hennepin Healthcare uses the following criteria for determining a patient’s condition:

  • Critical – Questionable prognosis. Vital signs unstable, not within normal limits. Patient may be unconscious, indicators unfavorable. Major complications and death may be a possibility.
  • Serious – Acutely ill with questionable prognosis; vital signs may be unstable, not within normal limits. Indicators questionable, chance for improved prognosis.
  • Satisfactory – Excellent or good prognosis. Vital signs (pulse, temp, blood pressure) stable, within normal limits. Patient conscious; may be uncomfortable or experiencing minor complications. Indicators (such as mobility, appetite) excellent.
  • Undetermined – The patient is in the process of being evaluated; condition not available.

Patient interviews
Even if the patient contacts you to make arrangements for an interview, it is still dependent on approval from the medical staff and Public Relations before final arrangements will be made. All reporters must be escorted by a hospital Public Relations representative when on medical center property.

Read Hennepin Healthcare’s Media Policies.

Information for reporters during an emergency event

You may also use this form to submit a media request: