The hospital-media partnership: promoting public health or inducing public demand?

Following is a guest post from Dr. Saurabh Jha, a radiologist at the University of Pennsylvania who recently joined the HealthNewsReview.org team. He is active on Twitter under the handle @RogueRad. The views he expresses are his own and do not reflect the views of his employer. When I was seven, my mother told me that […]

4 10/29/2015

Journalists love superlative terms for cancer drugs – often questionably

“The Use of Superlatives in Cancer Research” is the title of an article in the journal JAMA Oncology this week, co-authored by Vinay Prasad, MD, MPH and medical student Matthew V. Abola. The topic should ring familiar with anyone who has followed HealthNewsReview.org for any period of time. They write: “Whereas most new cancer drugs afford […]


Trans-Pacific trade pact’s pharma provisions lack media scrutiny

After 10 years of talks, the 12 countries involved in the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact came to a tentative agreement earlier this month. The New York Times called the TPP the “largest regional trade accord in history,” encompassing environmental, labor, tariff and international property standards, cross-border data flow, and more. It will impact […]

10 10/27/2015

Why the media must play a bigger role in policing unsafe medical devices

Contributor Trudy Lieberman has been tracking the progress of industry-friendly regulatory legislation — the 21st Century Cures Act — through Congress. Here she examines how current medical device regulations are already allowing many faulty devices on the market — and how the media will need to be more vigilant if and when current regulations are […]

2 10/26/2015

Monday montage of momentous health news coverage

We already have an occasional Five Star Friday feature, shining a light on excellence in some of the media messages we’ve seen.  But this week begins with a couple of big stories that are not the kinds of stories we normally review.  But we at least wanted to draw attention to them. The Boston Globe […]


Five Star Friday: Vox, Stat, FiveThirtyEight… and also horrifying horsesh-t.

Saluting excellence once again in our Five Star Friday feature. In our systematic story reviews, Julia Belluz of Vox.com got a 5-star score for her piece, “How well do flu shots work? Here’s what the science says.” The New York Times got a 4-star score for “Talk therapy found to ease schizophrenia,” and US News […]

3 10/22/2015

Is 1 in 7 Odds a Breakthrough? Is it Even Promising?

The following is a guest post from Andrew Holtz, one of our longtime contributors, who is an independent health journalist based in Portland, Oregon. Andrew has been a medical correspondent for CNN and is past president of the Association of Health Care Journalists.   One in seven. That’s how many cancer drugs approved using surrogate […]

2 10/21/2015

Biden resurrects false promise of cancer “Moonshot”

Vice President Joe Biden announced today that he won’t be running for president in 2016 but vowed to spend his last 15 months in office working to “silence this deadly disease.” Biden also resurrected the “Moonshot” analogy first used by M.D. Anderson to describe its vast initiative to cure cancer: “And I believe that we need […]


What were main take-home messages of new ACS mammography guidelines?

The Journal of the American Medical Association published “Breast Cancer Screening for Women at Average Risk: 2015 Guideline Update From the American Cancer Society.”  The recommendations:  The ACS recommends that women with an average risk of breast cancer should undergo regular screening mammography starting at age 45 years (strong recommendation). Women aged 45 to 54 years […]

2 10/21/2015

How well do hospitals support breastfeeding? Depends which media outlet you read

The following is a guest post by Carolina Branson, PhD, an associate editor for HealthNewsReview.org. The blogosphere and news media are overrun with stories on breastfeeding. Recent topics include: Does breast feeding improve IQ? Breastfeeding increases bonding. Is breastfeeding okay in public? Moms feel shamed by being unable to breastfeed. Clearly it is a loaded […]


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