More caution about news from scientific meetings

Dartmouth’s Steve Woloshin and Lisa Schwartz have studied the pitfalls of news coverage based on scientific meetings. Their new work, in the Medical Journal of Australia, looked at print and broadcast news stories based on research reports at five major scientific meetings on heart disease, AIDS, cancer, neuroscience and radiology. Results: “34% of the 187 […]


TIME magazine fails to disclose glaring conflict of interest

What ethical standards still exist at Time magazine? Or do they exist and they’re just being ignored? The Center for Science in the Public Interest points out that this week’s Time magazine includes a column by Dr. Andrew Weil touting the benefits of fish oil supplements. CSPI says, “The column was sparked by a recent […]


CNN Screening Advice for Women

CNN has been giving viewers screening test advice that does not reflect the best medical evidence. In my last Publisher’s Note I pointed out how CNN’s on-air advice conflicted with evidence-based guidelines when it advised men in their 40s, 50s and 60s about screening tests they should have. That segment was broadcast in February. In […]


Nurse criticizes Strib for promoting cancer magic bullet

First, this is not “beat up on the Star Tribune week.” There’s no agenda here. Sometimes events and patterns unfold before one’s eyes. On Monday, in my “Proportionality in Journalism” entry, I wrote about Mother’s Day weekend stories in several media – “endless weapy stories about breast cancer. But few hard issue-oriented stories about breast […]


You can tell it’s TV sweeps-ratings time

As my research has shown, whenever ratings-sweeps periods roll around, television news departments miraculously find time to cure the problem of not having enough time to devote to health news. In my market, Minneapolis-Saint Paul, the May sweeps period has been filled with tears, joy and new hope surrounding dramatic breakthroughs and promising developments for […]


CNN Screening Advice for Men

In early February, on CNN’s American Morning program, CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta discussed “tips for men” about what kind of medical tests they should have in their 30s, 40s and 50s. (Transcript) Gupta and guest, Dr. Christopher Kelly of NYU School of Medicine, then listed a series of tests they recommend for men […]


Reasons for improved longevity in U.S.?

OK, so many news stories today are reporting the new statistics suggesting (with lots of head-scratching and remaining doubts by some observers) that the U.S. had the biggest single-year decline in deaths since 1938. If true, who or what gets the credit? The Star Tribune, in its first sentence,says it’s “a powerful testament to medical […]

2 4/18/2006

Thousands go to HealthNewsReview.org

First day traffic to the new HealthNewsReview.org website was strong yesterday, with thousands of journalists and consumers visiting the site. Public comment has been overwhelmingly positive. Merrill Goozner of the Center for Science in the Public Interest wrote on his blog: “…I’m hoping a new effort by journalism professor Gary Schwitzer of the University of […]

2 4/17/2006

Debut of HealthNewsReview.org

I’m proud to unveil a project I’ve been working on for 8 months. Please visit HealthNewsReview.org to see a new attempt to help improve health journalism in the U.S. A team of more than 20 reviewers from journalism, medicine, public health and health services research will evaluate and grade health news stories that include claims […]


Launching The Site

HealthNewsReview.org is an attempt to help improve the accuracy, balance and completeness of news stories that make claims about new ideas in health care. It is not intended to belittle the hard work of well-intentioned journalists. I covered health and medical news on a daily basis for 15 years and I know about deadline pressures. […]


Tips & Resources for Analyzing Health Care Claims

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