Before good crisis communication – and, more to the point, a desired outcome – can occur, effective crisis preparedness must be in place. A truism? Maybe. But who would have expected a Dallas hospital to have missed the point when it accepted an Ebola patient in September, 2014?
Awareness, readiness and drills are everything in effective crisis management and communication. Yet, says an Associated Press story, “The Texas hospital that treated the first person diagnosed in the U.S. with Ebola was not adequately prepared for a patient with the deadly virus and stumbled because of communication failures, an independent review released Friday found.”
Anyone seriously interested in communication under trying circumstances, or in dealing with a crisis as it unfolds, ought to be familiar with the experience of Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
“The report, the first outside review of the hospital’s response,” says the AP, “was conducted by a panel of four physicians and one nurse and led by a former chief executive of the Mayo Clinic. It comes amid a lawsuit by Nina Pham, one of two nurses who contracted Ebola while caring for (Thomas Eric) Duncan, who died in October (2014).”
Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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