The Initial Phase of a Crisis

In the initial phase of a crisis, the public wants to know what they want to know now. They want timely and accurate facts about what happened and what is being done.

Communication objectives during the initial phase include:

  • Acknowledge event with sympathy
  • Explain and inform in simple terms
  • Establish organization and spokesperson credibility
  • Provide courses of action—where and how they can get more information
  • Commit to stakeholders and public to provide continued communication

Surviving the first 48 hours of a crisis

This phase will be triggered by the health department acknowledging an unfolding crisis or because of intense media interest. All crisis communications must be designed to manage the first 48 hours of an event. Use this checklist after verification of an event.

Risk communication assessment

Fill in the worksheet to assess your needs.