Search Results for "crap"
Toilet Bowl Tuesday: A craptastic race to the bottom for misleading health news
Sunday’s Super Bowl supposedly represented the zenith of professional football: top players, in top form, playing at the top level. Anyone want to give me odds on any of the following news stories — which all showed up in our newsfeed before 9 AM today — winning some sort of Toilet Bowl for health news? […]2
We are in a crisis of crap health news — this week’s reporting shows why
I can’t remember a week that has featured so much useless reporting about studies that are meaningless to the average reader. All the stories featured clickbait-y diet topics like alcohol, chocolate, coffee, and fiber. All were based on observational studies that can only show associations, not cause-and-effect, and which are prone to drawing conclusions that […]12/18/2013
4th annual year-ender on health care PR crap
I don’t think all public relations messages about health care are crap. But most of what I see is. And I can’t stand seeing public relations that may end up hurting the public. The Public Relations Society of America’s code of ethics talks about serving the public good…and “a special obligation to operate ethically.” Hmm. […]6 12/26/2012
3rd annual year-ender on health care PR crap we receive
I’ve been too nice the past two years, calling my year-enders “PR puffery” or “PR stuff.” The stuff I’m writing about here is pure crap. So we’re calling it that. This annual series is about the bombardment of news releases sent to journalists who are trying to decide what is vital information for readers, viewers […]
Cancer misinformation in various media irks breast cancer patients in US & UK
When we recently announced our new series on patient harms from misleading media, I heard from Robert O’Connor, PhD, research head for the Irish Cancer Society. He wanted to add an international perspective to what we were seeing about cancer misinformation in the U.S., and he wanted to help bring more patient voices into the […]
Are the clinical trial results for breast cancer drug taselisib ‘incredibly exciting’ or ‘disappointing’?
The recent publicity around Roche’s drug taselisib is a bit like a choose-your-own-adventure book: Depending on what news release or news article you read, you’d likely have very different conclusions about the drug’s performance in a recent clinical trial. Presented at ASCO18, the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the phase 3 […]3
Erin Andrews’ misdirected cervical cancer screening promo overlooks harms of frequent testing
You may have seen celebrity Erin Andrews’ crusade to promote cervical cancer screening, which draws from a well-worn corporate playbook of hiring celebrities to sell medical interventions. But this time the sponsor, medical technology company Hologic, erred in picking a well-off white television personality to offer advice on a disease that disproportionately kills low-income, minority, […]
5-Star Friday: Breadth and depth
One of the joys of health care journalism is the breadth — and depth — of what we cover. The stories we’ve chosen below reflect that. They range from economics to ethics. From the art of healing to the art of dying. This is great writing. And we’re happy to acknowledge it. If you agree, […]
Salads keep your brain 11 years younger? What you need to know
A few years ago, the website Hairpin.com posted a photo essay that captured a slice of the silliness of some stock photo collections. Under a headline, but with no other words, there were simply 19 photos that matched the headline, “Women Laughing Alone With Salad.” But salad silliness isn’t limited to stock photo images. Last […]
2017 year-ender: Major themes from a year’s worth of news release reviews
We’re closing in on our 500th news release review since launching this service in April 2015. What have we learned? We’ve learned that overall, universities, academic medical centers, hospitals, trade groups and industry are committing many of the same mistakes and omitting the same key information they were in 2015 when we started. We’re dedicated […]
Gene therapy and hemophilia: Washington Post wisely tells readers ‘the study has some limitations’
Whether this particular treatment revolutionizes the landscape for hemophilia B sufferers will remain an open question for some years–and the story should have emphasized that more.
Gene therapy makes a big advance treating hemophilia B blood disorder
Health care reform under Trump: A guide to “universal access” and other slippery slogans
The next health care reform messaging war has begun, and when the slogans start flying, some reporters start following. We’ve been through this before. In 2009 during debate on the Affordable Care Act, hardly a day went by without some news organization passing along the shop-worn phrase, “affordable quality health care for all.” It worked […]
Health care PR in 2016: Who made the grade?
2016 was our first full year evaluating PR news releases that make claims about health care interventions. Ours is the only project that systematically evaluates these documents, which are designed to bring attention to something that the issuing organization thinks is newsworthy — often a new study about a test or treatment. Some — not […]
Bloomberg’s story on virtual reality for pain control was a little too rosy
This story did a lot of things right, but it didn’t go deep enough into a discussion of what research has found so far about the treatment.
Hospitals Try Giving Patients a Dose of VR
CBS story on stem cells and root canals inflates the benefits and ignores the risks
When there are no direct clinical benefits to quantify about a possible new medical intervention, it’s a sign the research may be too preliminary for a wide audience.