8/14/2007

Tough questions missing on robot story

The Star Tribune offered a business section feature yesterday on local doctors finding new uses for the $1.2 million Da Vinci robotic surgery devices. At $1.2 million, you bet they want to and need to find new uses. The story explained that the robotic device came on the market just 8 years ago, that Minnesota […]

8/13/2007

Under the influence of drug marketing

The Los Angeles Times last week published a series of articles on drug marketing. Excerpts: “In a nation that consumed $279-billion worth of prescription medications in 2006 – spending 80% of that on brand name drugs – their efforts appear to be paying off. Americans filling a prescription choose brand-name products 37% of the time, […]

7/27/2007

Radio appearance

Minnesota Public Radio invited me as guest on their “Midmorning” program today to talk about the state of health care journalism. You can hear the clip at: http://www.publicradio.org/tools/media/player/news/midmorning/2007/07/27_midmorn2(Real Player required to download and listen)

2 7/26/2007

Do you trust CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta?

The political newsletter CounterPunch, the Chicago Tribune and some of its readers weigh in on the question: “Do you trust CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta?”

4 7/25/2007

Paid-for TV health "news"

I always talk a great deal with my students about the blurred line between news and advertising in many settings these days. Now some of my past students are seeing it for themselves. For whatever reason, a disproportionate share of one year’s graduating class is working in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where today the Argus […]

7/23/2007

When news, advertising and new media clash

At StreetAnatomy.com, see what happens when “smart systems” search for relevant terms in news stories so that related ads can be placed on that web page. It’s not always a good idea.

7/18/2007

NBC still hyping restless leg syndrome

NBC apparently doesn’t understand the concept of disease-mongering. Or else they don’t care. Because they keep practicing the same flawed reporting on restless leg syndrome. See my entry on The World Health Care Blog. And for anyone with legitimate restless leg syndrome, please read the entire column before writing to me. I’m not questioning your […]

7/10/2007

Michael Moore blitzes Wolf on CNN

Michael Moore came out swinging in “The Situation Roomâ€? with Wolf Blitzer on CNN last evening. First, CNN replayed a several-days old report by Sanjay Gupta that concluded that Moore “fudged the factsâ€? in his “Sickoâ€? documentary on the U.S. health care system. Then Blitzer led off with an insipid, insulting introduction of Moore: “Give […]

2 6/18/2007

No cure for Reader's Digest hype

The cover of the July Reader’s Digest refers to back pain “cures”? The inside headline refers to seven “breakthroughs”? C’mon Reader’s Digest: stop the hype. Here are the seven: 1. A neurostimulator for which RD provides not one shred of evidence – only anecdote. 2. An infrared belt which the inventor “is trying to get […]

6/14/2007

Mirror Award goes to HealthNewsReview.org

Just back from New York, where one of the inaugural Mirror Awards honoring excellence in media industry reporting was given to HealthNewsReview.org. The other awards went to: Clive Thompson, New York Magazine Philip Weiss, New York Magazine David Carr, The New York Times Andreas Kluth, The Economist American Journalism Review Dean Miller, Nieman Reports Lifetime […]

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