NHS Lothian Media Room
About the NHS Lothian Communications Team
The NHS Lothian Communications Team is responsible for providing an enormous range of information for hundreds of thousands of patients and approximately 24,000 staff. This can include everything from major advertising and health promotion campaigns to the vital information and updates staff need to get their jobs done. The team also deals with large numbers of media enquiries from national and local newspapers, TV, radio and specialist publications.
As the provider of health services to a population of around 800,000 in four council areas (City of Edinburgh, West Lothian Midlothian and East Lothian), NHS Lothian must be publicly accountable and engage with the community it serves, actively involving it in development plans.
Communicating openly and effectively is a key priority for the organisation. Its communications team is responsible for making information about NHS Lothian’s performance, activities and full range of acute and primary care services widely accessible. Information is targeted at patients and carers, NHS Lothian’s staff, partner organisations, the media, and other interested parties. It provides information, and responds to enquiries about, everything from the three large acute hospitals (Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Western General, and St John’s) and the Royal Hospital for Sick Children to primary healthcare services and community hospitals, treatment units and pharmacies.
The team manages both external and internal communications.
External communications range from:
- for the public - website information, reports (including the annual report), a newspaper for service users and stakeholders, patient information posters, publications and leaflets.
- for the media - responding to journalists’ queries round the clock, researching information, drafting and issuing press releases and statements, compiling feature articles.
Internal communications activities include producing monthly team brief bulletins, the Connections staff newspaper, and intranet information.
The team comprises a director of communications, communications managers and officers (who work in small teams dealing with specific service areas, performance aspects and issues), and web and graphics specialists.
For more information please see the "Communications Team" section.