Health Care Media Relations for Northshore University HealthSystem

Winger Marketing has worked closely with the NorthShore University HealthSystem (formerly Evanston Northwestern Healthcare) and its Corporate Communications Department to support it’s (at the time) three hospital system. At the time, the Integrative Medicine Program was new and it was our assignment to promote the new service line and create awareness for its new director. In response to the ongoing debate about the merits of integrative medicine, we developed a media relations campaign to dispel myths about this type of care.

Our Solution:

  • Winger developed strategic key messages that demonstrated the importance of complementary and alternative medicine practices.
  • Publicity materials that highlighted the advantages of integrative medicine were created and distributed.
  • We arranged a luncheon in which the famous “father” of integrative medicine, Dr. Andrew Weil, spoke. Dr. Weil discussed the innumerable benefits of incorporating this type of program into a hospital setting.


  • Dr. Weil’s luncheon was a sold-out success. The talk was attended by the hospital’s target audience of elite philanthropists.
  • Key media representatives, including the senior editor of Chicago magazine, were invited and attended.
  • Winger Marketing used the topic of integrative medicine to generate a cover story for the annual “medical” issue of Chicago magazine, coverage for which health care professionals and institutions vie each year.
  • Dr. Karen Koffler, Director of Integrative Medicine at NorthShore University HealthSystem, was featured on the cover of Chicago magazine in support of a story on integrative care. With over 160,000 well-educated and affluent subscribers, the magazine was the most appropriate possible audience for meeting the hospital’s goals of philanthropic support. Winger guided this coverage from start to finish, from the story pitch to the cover photo showing the doctor’s bare feet.
  • Directly following this coverage, the dynamic Dr. Koffler experienced a surge of new patients. Her schedule was subsequently booked several months in advance.
  • The Integrative Medicine Program at NorthShore University HealthSystem was placed in high regard in the community, while Dr. Koffler is now considered the go-to professional in her field.

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