Kevin Lomangino is the managing editor of HealthNewsReview.org. He tweets as @Klomangino.
As the only U.S. organization that systematically evaluates media messages about health care every day, we have a lot on our plate at HealthNewsReview.org.
In 10.5 years, we have published 5,000 articles, including 2,300 news story reviews and 300 reviews of PR news releases.
Whether it’s incomplete news coverage on statins or a university news release making unfounded claims about its chocolate milk product for concussions, the barrage of media misinformation – the assault on the public dialogue about health care – never stops. And there is no other project that does what we do – every day – to help people sharpen their critical thinking and to analyze claims about health care interventions. This is a rubber-meets-the-road health care reform initiative, from the ground up. Help citizens/consumers/patients think about issues more completely and they’ll make better decisions. Then we might stand a chance of effecting truly meaningful health care reform.
At this time of year, we want to acknowledge the people and organizations who make our work possible. It’s an amazing network of friends and contributors who’ve come together with one goal in mind: improving the public dialogue about health care.
With political change on the horizon and an uncertain health care forecast ahead, our mission is more relevant than ever and we look forward to fulfilling it more vigorously than ever — with help from readers and supporters like you.
We’re a small organization. We don’t accept advertising. We don’t take money from drug companies or medical device makers.
If you value our work, please take a moment to contribute what you can to keep it going. Every dollar you give helps us to shine a brighter light on the increasingly murky corners of health care and the media landscape. And it will help people – news consumers and health care consumers – many of them desperate for unbiased, quality information — to make better decisions about their care.
We send our heartfelt thanks to people who support our mission in different ways – with a few groupings listed here in no particular order.
It’s never easy to take criticism, but we consistently find that journalists and PR writers are open to our constructive comments and appreciative of the effort that we put into them. It’s gratifying to know that our work is having an impact as demonstrated by this small sampling of the many comments we’ve received since January 2016:
Staying on top of the health news beat is an undertaking that is far too big for our small team of 4 full-time and 2 part-time staff members. Fortunately, we benefit from the consistent assistance, much of it pro bono – from more than 50 regular reviewers representing varied fields of expertise – including journalists, communications professionals, physicians, PhD health professionals, and trained patient advocates. Many more occasional contributors feed us regularly with guest posts, quotable reactions, and tips about what they’re seeing in health care and/or in the media. Our smart readership is one of our greatest assets, and we always welcome and encourage your insights on what we should be covering and what we can do better.
We’re proud to call the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health our home. It’s an institution that shares our commitment to improving how health and health care information is communicated to the public. Special thanks to Dean John Finnegan for his support of our project.
They are last on this list but first in our hearts. Less than two short years ago, this project was dead in the water and was running out of prospects for revitalization. The Laura and John Arnold Foundation took a bet on us and it is the primary reason we’re still in business today. As we get ready to close the books on the second year of our initial LJAF grant, we are on track to surpass our previous yearly record for traffic by more than 60%. And we have many plans for 2017 that their continued funding will make possible. Look for exciting announcements on that front soon.