Health Secretary's voice most heard in print press

Health Secretary Alan Johnson has emerged as the most quoted figure in national news stories about swine flu, according to exclusive analysis commissioned by PRWeek.

Johnson was quoted 17 times in the national press on 28 and 29 April.

In second place was the UK Government’s chief medical officer Liam Donaldson, who was quoted in ten articles.

Scottish Health Minister Nicola Sturgeon managed ten quotes but Gordon Brown was quoted in just five articles.

Meanwhile, the Conservatives struggled to be heard with shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley featuring three times and leader David Cameron opting not to give any quotes during this period.

Professor Neil Ferguson, a member of the World Health Organisation’s task force tackling the outbreak, was quoted in seven articles.

Other non-governmental spokespeople included virus expert professor Nigel Dimmock and Andrew Easton, professor of virology at the University of Warwick.

From the private sector, Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary claimed only people living in ‘slums’ would be affected. Three newspapers covered this.

The research was compiled by media monitoring firm Int­elligent Media and monit­ored national print in England.

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