The long-term care industry is one of those industries where bad news gets media attention more than good. Rarely are long-term care homes in the media for all the good things they’ve done.
So what do you do if the negative spotlight is turned on you?
1.Don’t shy away from the situation
Whatever the situation is, when dealing with media, face it head on. Address the situation clearly and concisely in your statements. Don’t try to bluff or pretend the situation hadn’t occurred because it makes you look less than honest or as if you have something to hide.
If the issue is one that is the facility’s error, then it’s important in your statement to take responsibility. Don’t try to pass the blame on to someone else. Being open and honest goes a long way in showing the facility in a positive light.
However, sometimes negative publicity arises with a situation that is not the facility’s fault. Don’t be so quick to jump on the apology bandwagon otherwise it turns the story around and the perception of the situation changes.
3.Share the way forward
It’s important in your statements to the media that you share the steps going forward. Perhaps changes are being made as a result of the situation at hand. Clearly articulate these. This makes the resolution of the situation end on a positive note. You want to convey that your facility is doing what it can to move forward past the incident.
Negative publicity can happen to any facility. Just remember to be honest in your statements to the media.