Frequently Asked Questions: Media Relations
Who is my media relations contact for cancer-related or UFHCC-related media requests?
Assistant Director of Communications,
UF Health Cancer Center
firstname.lastname@example.org | (352) 273-5718
Your backup contact is Rossana Passaniti, the media relations coordinator for UF Health Communications: email@example.com | (352) 273-8569
When do I need to contact my media relations person?
As soon as a media request is made. Please send the request to Marilee Griffin as soon as you are contacted by a member of the media — either by forwarding her the email, or requesting the journalist speak to her before agreeing to an interview, etc.
Why do I need to involve my media relations contact from the start?
Several reasons. For one, she will vet the request and assess it for possible sensitivities and policy conflicts. She will also log the request in the media relations database and track the resulting clips. She can offer media training, if necessary, and advise regarding any HIPAA concerns (as well as coordinate patient consent forms, as needed).
Lastly, she can help expedite and coordinate the actual interview.
A journalist wants to come interview me somewhere on campus. Is that OK?
Usually, it’s fine. However, Marilee should first assess whether or not she should be present— because UF Health policy, as informed by HIPAA, states that members of the media need to be escorted by communications personnel. If the journalist is interviewing you in a place on campus frequented by patients — or if he or she needs to pass through a place frequented by patients to get to you, Marilee will definitely need to escort them.
This is also the case if the journalist wants to speak to you or film in a lab space (as dictated by strict UF Health regulations regarding animal models, etc.) She will handle the coordination of a media escort, if it’s needed; in the end, it’s usually more convenient for the media as well.
I would like to pitch a story or myself as an expert to the media. How do I do that?
Marilee receives media requests almost every week on a variety of topics and works to find sources for them. If you would like to be included in her list of media-friendly experts for these occasions, please email her (firstname.lastname@example.org) with the areas of expertise you feel comfortable speaking to.
Conversely, if you feel you have a story that the media might be interested in (research, patient story, first-in-Florida, etc.), please contact Marilee. She can vet the story and use her database of media contacts to pitch the story appropriately.
I would like some media training. How do I arrange that?
Marilee would be happy to assist with media training for all types of interviews — for print, video or radio, etc. and has resources to share. There is also the potential to participate in a media training workshop, as put on by the UF Health Communications office. Whatever your level of interest, please contact Marilee.