Crisis Communications: Responding When Your Emergency Department is On Fire

Open to All PRSA Members | Hosted by the Health Academy

This section webinar is not currently available. Email the Professional Development Department to inquire about future availability of this program.

Categories: Communication Strategy, Crisis & Reputation

On Feb. 22, 2018, a man purposely crashed his car into Middlesex Hospital's Emergency Department and lit himself on fire which spread into the building. No patients or staff were injured but this a long-duration emergency for the hospital that attracted intense media attention. In this webinar participants will learn how the hospital dealt with the publicity during and in the days following the event. Best practices will be shared for communication and public relations professionals on implementing a crisis communications plan, crafting messages with confidence and effectively communicating to stakeholders.

By the end of this webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Implement a communications plan with a small public relations team during a significant crisis.
  • Effectively craft a message with numerous external stakeholders including the police, FBI and city officials.
  • Establish confidence with patients and families during a significant crisis.
  • Effectively communicate to all internal stakeholders including employees, physicians, volunteers and board members.


Amanda Falcone, director of public relations, Middlesex Hospital

As public relations director, Amanda Falcone handles all media relations, social media, writing and editing efforts for Middlesex Hospital, and she managed all communications in February 2018 when a car crashed into the Hospital's Emergency Department and a fire ensued.

Amanda has also worked as deputy press secretary for U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, an account executive for Duffy & Shanley Inc. and as the communications specialist for the Capitol Region Education Council.

Amanda began her career as a multimedia journalist, working for the Record-Journal and The Hartford Courant. She was the first reporter in the country at the scene of the 2007 Cheshire home invasion, and her investigative reporting led to the arrests of a state senator and a well-known nonprofit executive director. Amanda also covered the Boston Marathon bombing and mass shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School and Hartford Distributors Inc.

Chris Boyle, director of public relations, Bristol Hospital and Health Care Group, Inc.


Participants with the APR credential earn 1.0 APR Maintenance Credit for a webinar. Learn more about Accreditation maintenance.