Information about the Department of Health's social media policy

We are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy. By using our social media channels you agree to our Social Media Policy.

The department’s presence on social media - Twitter (@healthdpt), LinkedIn, Vimeo and Youtube is managed by the Press Office team on behalf of the department

Tweets and other posts on social media will include alerts about the following:

  • ministerial announcements
  • press releases
  • speeches
  • new content published on the website
  • marketing campaigns
  • invitations to input to consultations
  • departmental initiatives/programmes
  • any other issues the department considers appropriate

If you follow us on social media , we do not automatically follow back. We will use hashtags and mention other social media accounts where appropriate. Being followed, using hashtags or mentioning other accounts does not imply endorsement of any kind.

We will retweet, like and share where we think it is useful or interesting but, again, this is not an endorsement. We will update and monitor our social media accounts during normal office hours, Monday to Friday. Our social media accounts may occasionally be unavailable and we accept no responsibility for our lack of service due to any downtime. When making announcements, we will communicate first via social media when we think that this is the right approach.

We welcome feedback, ideas and engagement and will try to join the conversation where possible, and where it is right to do so. Where we can, we will point you to additional information already in the public domain.

We are not able to reply individually to all messages we receive via Twitter or LinkedIn. Emerging themes or helpful suggestions are routinely passed on to policy colleagues in the department.

When you ‘like’, ‘share’ or ‘comment’ on one of our posts, you should be aware that this will be publicly available. We may use your contact information/usernames to respond to messages/comments you send to us. If you post publicly on social media, we may share/retweet your post with our followers. Usernames of our followers are publicly available on our social media channels.

We may also receive information about you from third parties such as other social media users if they mention you, tag you or share a photo of you. When we upload content to social media we may also tag, share photos and content.

We may use analytics or third parties to analyse our social media channels for trends, insights and engagement.

You may unsubscribe/unfollow us at any stage.

We expect our users to offer us the same level of courtesy that we offer them, so we have a short set of 'house rules':

  • all users must comply with the social media platform’s Terms of Use as well as these house rules
  • you are wholly responsible for any content you post including content that you choose to share
  • we will report and seek to remove any social media profiles that are set up using departmental imagery without permission

We will remove, block, ban and if necessary, report users to the associated social media platform who direct messages at us which we believe:

  • bully, harass or intimidate any individual or organisation
  • are unlawful, libellous, defamatory, abusive, threatening, harmful, obscene, profane, sexually oriented or racially offensive
  • are deceptive or misleading
  • infringe or violate someone else's rights
  • violate the law
  • violate any intellectual property rights
  • discuss ongoing legal proceedings
  • are spam (persistent negative and/ or abusive tweeting in which the aim is to provoke a response)
  • advertise products or services
  • are irrelevant or off-topic
  • are disruptive
  • are repetitive

We will also remove, block, report or ban any user who:

  • encourages others to post such messages
  • uses offensive images as their profile picture
  • has an offensive user name

We do not engage in party politics.

Social media accounts are not a point of contact for media enquiries, which should be directed to the press office in the first instance. We do, however, reserve the right to comment on inaccurate coverage or comment.

We reserve the right to modify or change these conditions at any time.

The usual way of contacting the department for official correspondence is by:

In writing:

Department of Health
Press Office
Castle Buildings

Telephone: 028 9052 0500


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