Last updated: 01/04/2020
The communications team manages media enquiries and requests for filming and photography.
All media must request permission to film/photograph on our hospital sites and will be accompanied by a member of the press office while on the hospital site.
We have a wide range of leading clinicians at the Trust who can provide expert comment on a variety of health matters. If you would like to arrange an interview with any of our clinicians this must be arranged through the press office. We provide a responsive service and will endeavour to support your requirements and deadlines as best we can.
If you have a media enquiry relating to patients or services at the Trust’s hospitals in Bristol or Weston, please contact:
0117 342 3629 or 0117 342 3718 or email firstname.lastname@example.org during office hours (9am-5pm, Monday-Friday). Out of hours, an on call press officer is available to respond to urgent media queries that cannot wait until office hours. To contact the on-call press officer, please ring the switchboard on 0117 923 0000. Please note that team members' email accounts are not routinely monitored out of hours.
Freedom of Information (FOI) requests
Any requests made under the Freedom of Information Act should be sent to the FOI Administrator at Assembly Rooms, Trust HQ, Marlborough Street, Bristol, BS1 3NU or by emailing FreedomOfInfo@uhbw.nhs.uk.
Information for the media:
As part of its duty of care, University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust is committed to protecting patients' confidentiality. Legally, we have to get permission from patients or their next of kin in order to give any information to the media. Requests for interviewing and or photographing patients must always be made through the communications team.
We can assist with requests about the condition of patients being treated at our hospitals (known as ‘condition checks’). However, the following rules and guidelines apply:
- We place great emphasis on patient confidentiality. We will not divulge any information about a patient without permission from either the patient or their next of kin.
- If permission is granted, only a brief indication of the progress of the patient will be given; for example, comfortable, stable or critical.
- If the patient or their next of kin has specifically requested that no information is released to the media about their condition, their wishes will always be respected.
- To carry out a condition check we need the patient’s first and last name, their date of birth and the first line of their address, as well as permission from either the patient or their next of kin.
Media contacting hospital staff
Staff are not authorised to represent the Trust to the media. If staff are contacted directly by the media they must refer the journalist to the Communications team in the first instance.
Visits to hospital sites
All media visits to our hospitals must be cleared in advance through the Communications team.
Non-news, location or commercial filming
We encourage this where it is operationally possible. However, we do make a charge to cover staff time, administration and disruption. Permission to film will not be granted until the Trust is satisfied that appropriate public liability insurance is in place and a filming agreement has been signed.
We monitor social media activity between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday. We will always do our best to get back to anyone who contacts us as quickly as possible – our aim is within 24 hours. There may be times when we post on social media and respond outside of the hours above – usually during events.
We won’t be able to answer clinical or medical questions via our social media sites but we will signpost people to where to get information, advice or support. If you have feedback for us, then we will respond to your comments. If you have a complaint, we will direct message you for details and ask our patient support team to respond to you.