NorthShore brings on Porter for media relations

EVANSTON, IL: NorthShore University HealthSystem has hired Porter Novelli as its AOR for national media relations.

EVANSTON, IL: NorthShore University HealthSystem has hired Porter Novelli as its AOR for national media relations.

The agency was awarded the business without a pitch process.

The Omnicom Group firm will be responsible for handling all media relations for NorthShore's health systems, and it will work to showcase research and staff, said Paul George, global director of health at Porter.

NorthShore did not previously work with an agency specifically focused on national media relations. Chicago-based Res Publica Group handles local media relations for the company.

Porter will also work to position NorthShore as a leader in the specialty areas of oncology, neurology, orthopedics, cardiovascular care, and high-risk maternity.

“We are a leading organization and destination and have some nationally and [globally] recognized experts who are a great source for national stories,” said Amy Ferguson, assistant VP for integrated marketing and corporate communications at NorthShore. “We have worked with a few different agencies and realized over time [that] we needed one with national media contacts to get exposure. Porter Novelli has these contacts and is very skilled at telling stories and showcasing talent.”

She added that the healthcare company wants media coverage that is integrated across print, broadcast, and online. It will initially focus on promoting the work of NorthShore's neurological institute. 

The business will be split between the agency's New York and Chicago offices. Carol Franczek, SVP of marketing and corporate communications at NorthShore, will oversee the account. Porter declined to reveal the size of the account budget.

“There is a huge opportunity that will arise from the Affordable Care Act, as there will be more patients in the system, so hospitals around the country will be seeing more access to their services,” said George.

Porter added Henry Engleka to its health and wellness practice as an SVP in June. He is reporting to George, who joined the agency in January.

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