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Two Hospital Community Relations Programs that Get Out and About

By Stewart Gandolf, Chief Executive Officer

Many hospital marketing, advertising and public relations programs actively reach into the community. Here are two hospital programs that we spotted in the field recently. Although they are two totally different approaches to community relations, they both promote good health and demonstrate civic pride and involvement.

Chester County (PA) Hospital’s Welcome to the Neighborhood

Chester County Hospital

Think of this program as a “website welcome wagon.” The Chester County Hospital and Health System in Eastern Pennsylvania actively reaches out to individuals and families that have recently moved and are new to the neighborhood. By virtue of being new to the area, the “new mover” audience is in the process of establishing new routines and locating new service providers such as the local supermarket, hardware store, dry cleaner and the like.

Hospitals are not usually an early priority for new residents, but—in exchange for simple opt-in registration—the Chester County Hospital will greet you with an online Wellness Guide. It’s a useful resource with maps and information about parks, fitness facilities, hiking trails, farmers’ markets and the like. (They’ll also send a nice, blue, logo-bearing water bottle to you…for free.)

This community outreach effort makes a connection with new neighbors in a positive and healthy context before they need hospital or medical services.

Swedish “Breast Care Express” Still on the Road

Breast Care Express

If you live in the Seattle area, you’ve probably seen one of the Swedish Cancer Institute’s Mobile Mammography Program clinics. (If you haven’t seen these vehicles, be assured that they are impressive.)

Swedish Hospital pioneered this community outreach effort in 2004 when it rolled out a full-service, self contained, 64-foot mammography clinic on wheels. The Express features the latest in digital full-field mammography technology as well as a complete rooftop satellite system enabling the transmission of images to radiologists at Swedish.

In 2008, Swedish officially rolled out its second mobile mammography coach. The second Breast Care Express is slightly smaller to allow it easier access to in-city venues. The new truck also includes digital mammography, along with a wireless broadband communications system for securely transmitting mammograms back to Swedish.

Lonnie Hirsch

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