NOTE TO READERS: When this project lost substantial funding at the end of 2018, I lost the ability to continue publishing criteria-driven news story reviews and PR news release reviews - once the bread-and-butter of the site going back to 2006. The 3,200 archived reviews, while still educational, are getting old and difficult for me to technically maintain on the back end of the website. So I am announcing that I plan to remove these reviews from the site by April 1, 2021. The blog and the toolkit - two of the most popular features on the site - will remain. If you wish to peruse the reviews before they disappear, please do so by the end of March 2021. After that date you may still be able to access them via the Internet Archive Wayback Machine -

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That way, each week you can get summaries of the past week’s news reviews sent to you by e-mail. such as:

ABC’s Good Morning America, 2-star score

Homegrown Cure: Can Breast Milk Heal Adults?
Story on the potential for “harnessing the curative effects (of human breast milk) to fight terminal cancer.” But it left viewers’ heads spinning over what – if anything – is known.

ABC World News with Charles Gibson, 2-star score

A New Voice
High drama about one opera singer’s struggle with and treatment for recurrent respiratory papillomatosis. But the story lacks info on costs, evidence, and harms. And it quotes only one expert.

Associated Press wire service, 4-star score

Immune System Taught to Fight Deadly Skin Cancer
A well written, balanced story about a trial which created a buzz at a national meeting of oncologists. It was clear, hopeful without hyping the new treatment, and included expert comment.

Los Angeles Times, 4-star score

Study finds antidepressant doesn’t help autistic children
Story about the failure of Celexa to control repetitive behaviors in autistic kids does a solid job explaining why the study matters and its conclusions can be trusted. But read about 3 key flaws.

ABC World News with Charles Gibson, 0-star score

Personalized Cancer Care
This story is a marketing coup for a hospital, but its relevance to most cancer patients is unclear. This story failed on costs and on context, cheerleading for an approach that lacks evidence.

New York Post, 0-star score

Tomato Scoop
The best thing that can be said about this story is that it was short. For anyone thinking of lycopene supplements, this story failed to deliver the information they would need to make an informed choice.

New York Daily News, 3-star score

For many women, breast reduction means less pain and more activity
The story conveys the impression that the surgery is effective without providing any credible information to verify this. No mention of risks or costs. Egregious disease-mongering example.

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