June 16, 2009 11:50 ET

Covering an Ailing Healthcare System in Critical Times

June 24: Meet the Media

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - June 16, 2009) - The New York Chapter of the PRSA will host a panel of healthcare experts on June 24 at Ketchum New York to advise how the media and public relations professionals can enhance their relationships to disseminate accurate health information to consumers given the current economic and political environment.

Complex healthcare issues consistently dominate media headlines, from the price of drugs, the plight of the uninsured and underinsured, expanding healthcare coverage, privacy issues, and access to good care for families. The extensive coverage of the H1N1 flu outbreak has also raised concern about how best to inform consumers without scaring them.

A Ketchum Senior Vice President will moderate the esteemed panel which includes:

Barbara Ficarra, Host, Health in 30® Radio Show

Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA, is host and executive producer of the Health in 30® Radio Show, a 30-minute program that brings listeners the latest health and medical news and information with leading medical experts. The lively, informative discussions focus on education, prevention and patient advocacy.

"Medical professionals are passionate about improving media and communications skills imparting health information to the public."

Paula Rizzo, Video Health Producer,

Currently, Paula Rizzo is the video health producer for She previously produced news programs for WPIX-NY and contributed as a writer for CBS News. Paula offers insights on how to simplify frequently conflicting views from the medical establishment.

Steve Salvatore, MD, Medical Reporter, WPIX-TV

For more than 10 years, Steven J. Salvatore has been the Medical Reporter for WPIX-TV. He has worked for CNN and Fox affiliate WNYW-TV, hosting programs for Discovery Health cable television network. "Dr. Steve" loves what he does -- educating viewers about health and wellness.

"When communicating medical information, physicians should focus on how people are affected and what they can do about it."

Diane Umansky, Vice-President, Editorial Content Director, MediZine

As Editorial Director of MediZine's Healthy Living magazine, as well as REMEDY, Diabetes Focus, Diabetes Focus Espanol and MDminute, Diane Umansky brings almost 25 years' experience as a professional journalist. Diane has contributed to numerous health and wellness articles and authored seven children's books ensuring that health information is easy to understand with practical tips.

The event will be held at Ketchum, 1285 Avenue of the Americas, 4th floor (between 51st and 52nd Streets) in midtown Manhattan. It begins with networking at 5:30 p.m., followed by the presentation from 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. When two people sign up for the event, the second will receive half off the registration fee. For more information and to register, visit the PRSA-NY website at

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