Media Communications Policy

Statement of Policy: To establish guidelines for Media Communications as they relate to donor information disclosure.
Statement of Purpose: To inform media of guidelines regarding donor information disclosure and donor family involvement in media activities.

Statement of Procedure:

  • Life Alliance will collaboratively work with the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine Office of Communications and adhere to existing UM communications policies. The Office of Communications is the official source of news and information at the University of Miami School of Medicine. The office serves as a resource for the media and for medical school faculty, staff, and administrators.
  • Designated Life Alliance staff will only release organ donor information (first &/or last name, age, city/state of residence, organ donation information-number of organs recovered, and/or any other personal information about donor) to media if release forms have been completed (Authorization/Release for Photography or Audio/Video Recordings & Attachment 46) by donor family.
  • Designated Life Alliance staff will only request release of organ donor information from donor family for media purposes after (at least) three months post donation.
  • Designated Life Alliance staff will only release organ donor information prior to three months post donation if donor family requests the release of information/media exposure.
  • No one is authorized to speak to the news media regarding an organ donor/donation case without clearance from the Communications Department.
  • When crises erupt, the Communications department will notify Miller School of Medicine Office of Communications, gather and verify information about the crisis, assess the severity of the crisis, and collaboratively develop strategies concerning how information is to be released, who should speak on behalf of the institution and who is to be notified.

Life Alliance Organ Recovery Agency is committed to taking a pre-emptive approach to a public relations crisis (i.e. media has obtained confidential information regarding an organ donor), using disclosure whenever possible as the preferred strategy for preventing or minimizing public relations crises.

Exemptions from this policy:

Life Alliance will request consent for the release of donor information to media from donor family prior to three months post donation only if a media response is necessary due to coverage not initiated by Life Alliance (i.e. sudden crisis-immediate and unforeseen circumstances with potential for adverse public relations) and/or persistent media inquiries. Release forms need to be completed.