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Southwest Health Systems Media Relations Policy


Media Requests/Interviews

All requests by an external media organization must be coordinated and supervised by the Public Information Officer and Marketing Specialist. While on hospital premises, all members of the media must also be accompanied by a member of the staff.

No patients or visitors at Southwest Health System may be photographed or videotaped without their prior consent and/or the consent of a legal guardian in the case of minor children or incapacitated adults. The Public Relations/Communications staff will have all patients, family members, or visitors sign an “Authorization for Use and Disclosure of PHI for a Communications or Media Relations Activity” prior to any interviews and/or photography.


Release of Patient Information

Under HIPAA, matters of public record (those situations that are by law reportable to public authorities such as the police, coroner or public health officials) are no different than other cases. Victims of accidents, explosions, falls, shootings, stabbings, injury from fire, natural disasters or terrorism have the same privacy rights as all other patients.

As with any patient, when a public figure is hospitalized and the media inquiry contains the patient’s name, confirmation and the one-word condition may be given unless the patient requests that no information be released.


Please contact the Public Relations Officer or Marketing Specialist if you have any questions.


southwest health system

(970) 565-6666

Home Office

1311 North Mildred Road

Cortez, CO 81321



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