Health News Review
  • Dec 13 2012

    Other views on the NYT op-ed, “The 2,000 Year-Old Wonder Drug”

    Dr. David Agus, tireless promoter of his book, “The End of Illness,” and whose involvement in an ABC news story about a reporter’s coronary calcium CT scan led to the network correcting/retracting the piece, is now at it again. The New York Times published his op-ed piece, “The 2,000-Year-Old Wonder Drug,” the start of which [...]

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  • Oct 4 2012

    Terrific NYT interactive news coverage of first presidential debate of 2012

    Since much of last night’s debate focused on health care issues, it’s relevant for us to touch on it in this blog, which focuses only on health care issues. The New York Times offers a solid public service piece of explanatory journalism with: full video of the event transcript of the debate fact checks and [...]

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  • Jun 29 2012

    Aftermath of CNN/Fox debacle on Supreme Court: No reason to rush; many reasons to lose trust

    The rush to report. Being first more important than being correct. These are sometimes the hallmark of television news.  Newsrooms and journalism schools across the land should use yesterday’s unbelievable gaffes by CNN and Fox News as teaching moments. Within the newsrooms of CNN and Fox news, all staffers should have to sit and look [...]

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  • Jun 25 2012

    Forbes column on fear-mongering of dirty hotel rooms

    On, Andrew Bender writes, “Is Your Hotel Room Contaminated?  Or Is The Media Hype Making You Sick?” He reflects on what he calls “fear-mongering based on ..a self-admittedly inconclusive study.”   Meantime, lots of ink (or digits) for this study: an MSNBC story making the rounds of NBC station websites across the country Reuters:  [...]

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  • Apr 6 2012

    The challenges of science journalism in the “big data” age

    Regular readers of this blog or visitors to this site should know about science journalist Erika Check Hayden’s piece, “What the ‘limits of DNA’ story reveals about the challenges of science journalism in the ‘big data’ age.” You should read the entire piece, but here are excerpts: On 2 April, Science Translational Medicine published a [...]

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  • Mar 28 2012

    A role model for Public Information Officers: best wishes, Earle Holland

    We often write about bad news releases and weak science overpromoted by academic medical centers and the like. And then there’s the work of Earle Holland. Or rather, there was the work of Earle Holland for 33 years at Ohio State University. He’s leaving April 6, after being told that “that leadership wanted to take [...]

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  • Feb 14 2012

    Why elevate Adele’s surgeon to “miracle” status?

    This is how my local CBS station, WCCO in Minneapolis, teased and promoted a story about the surgeon who worked on Adele’s vocal cord polyp.  Miracle?  Really?  Why do journalists feel the need to elevate stories about celebrities and their doctors to this level? For almost six years, we have worked through our project [...]

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  • Feb 9 2012

    Brief reflection on news industry economic woes

    This is just a periodic reminder to our readers:  yes, we are aware of the difficult economic times many are facing in the news industry. The news of the Washington Post offering staff buyouts for the fifth time in recent years is just the latest example. Sometimes journalists will write to us, defensively, saying things [...]

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  • Jan 20 2012

    Do health care news readers need an “information diet”?

    As we close out the week and prepare to head to a beach for a desperately-needed mid-winter break, here are some catch-up items we meant to write about earlier. NPR interview with author of The Information Diet making the case for “conscious consumption of news and information.”  We certainly make that case for health news [...]

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  • Jan 17 2012

    Unfiltered medical center news releases on Chicago Sun-Times website

    A journalist brought this to my attention.  It’s a case of dueling messages on the websites of the two big Chicago newspapers. One is a news story.  The other is nothing but an unvetted health care industry news release. On a Chicago Sun-Times website, a local medical center posts a news release touting its “new [...]

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