Health News Review
  • Feb 10 2012

    One reader’s reaction to TV story hyping coconut oil for Alzheimer’s, Parkinsons, etc.

    The reason we have dedicated ourselves to this project is that we believe that health care news can influence people – and it can either help them or hurt them.  In the crush of meeting their daily quotas, journalists – and their news organizations – may sometimes forget that what they report may influence individual [...]

    4 Comments 1 Star
  • Jan 12 2012

    Crowd-sourced Health News Rater project

    Ben Goldacre drew our attention to what he calls a “miniature crowd-sourced version of the meatier HealthNewsReview.org project.” It’s a new site run by biostatisticians and it’s called the Health News Rater. This is an interesting “low-threshold” citizen-science website approach. Here’s a screenshot from the site: We welcome any new players in this field of [...]

    2 Comments 1 Star
  • Aug 4 2011

    Guest post: Where is the voice of consumers in “Top* Doctors/Best Hospitals” rankings?

    This is a guest post from one of our medical editors, Harold DeMonaco, director of the Innovation Support Center at the Massachusetts General Hospital. —————————————————————————————- There are approximately 800,000 practicing physicians in the United States and not all of them can be the best. Finding the best doctor is a hit or miss process and [...]

    3 Comments
  • Jun 1 2011

    A new stink over breast cancer fundraising, lawsuits, and perfume

    The Star Tribune is the latest to report on an issue we’ve reported on before on this blog. Their story, “Lawsuits For the Cure?,” begins: Sue Prom helped organize the “Mush for a Cure” sled-dog race to raise money to fight breast cancer five years ago, a fundraiser that was humming along nicely until it [...]

    10 Comments
  • Apr 7 2011

    Advertising a different way to fight cholesterol – but without evidence on big outcomes

    I really don’t pay much attention to drug ads anymore. I feel I’ve learned everything I need to know about 4-hour erections, how the Flying Nun got grounded by osteoporosis, and how it’s a little green monster that causes my toenail fungus. But sometimes ads seek you out. Today I revisited my old stomping grounds, [...]

    5 Comments
  • Dec 29 2010

    Should we call us patients? Thoughts on changing mindsets, not terms

    E. Michael D. Scott, who describes himself as “a patient, a patient advocate, a patient educator, and a professional health care communications specialist” has a new article in the Journal of Participatory Medicine, “The Term “Patient” May Describe Me … But It Does Not Define Me.” The article is introduced by a Journal editor’s note, [...]

    2 Comments
  • Sep 23 2010

    Miracle! Cure! Marvel! – NBC’s way of covering cancer drug costs

    On the eve of the FDA’s Avastin announcement last night (and with no apparent reference to that important contextual point – although I acknowledge I didn’t see the entire newscast), the NBC Nightly News last night attempted to report on the problem some patients encounter in the face of an awful economy and astronomical cancer [...]

    2 Comments
  • Jul 8 2010

    You should know about the Society for Participatory Medicine

    e-patient Dave urged me and convinced me to join the Society for Participatory Medicine, and then he posted a kind note about my joining and about the work we’re trying to do on this site. That work has many overlapping goals with the Society’s. Under the masthead of the Society’s website it reads: Participatory Medicine [...]

    No Comments
  • Jul 6 2010

    Wisdom of the crowds erupts against Slate piece on industry-supported medical education

    “Why Big Pharma should buy your doctor lunch sometimes” is the headline of an article on Slate.com that has upset many readers. I’m not terribly upset about it because it just seems too naive and misinformed to get upset about. The final line of the piece tells you all you need to know about the [...]

    3 Comments
  • Jun 23 2010

    Wisdom of the crowds: news consumers tired of misinterpreted observational studies

    People are not dumb. Even if – or maybe especially if – news stories don’t point out the limitations of observational studies and the fact that they can’t establish cause-and-effect, many readers seem to get it. Here are some of the online user comments in response to a CNN.com story that is headlined, “Coffee may [...]

    No Comments