In just 310 words, this story covered key points of study results clearly, concisely and without hyperbole. It used terms like "may boost survival…may provide a new way…modest success" instead of overstating.
It is a difficult balance reporting on promising study results for a terrible disease and doing so without sensationalism. This story found that balance nicely. It proves that in only 310 words, health news stories can do a reasonable job addressing our criteria on how new findings should be reported.
Not applicable. Costs not discussed but we understand that at this point in the research. Nonetheless, we wish the story had used even one short line, as the Wall Street Journal did, to say the drugmaker said it was too soon to discuss pricing.
Good job on this, especially putting results in context in calm, measured terms:
Good job quantifying the harms found in the study, the severity of those harms, and including one – death (in 1.5% of patients on the experimental approach) – that many news stories didn’t report.
The story didn’t discuss a key point raised in some other stories, such as one by TheStreet.com that reported that the study "lacked a comparison to a placebo or true control, which makes the results harder to interpret."
No disease mongering in this story.
The study author was interviewed along with a clinician who has used the drug. Drug company funding of the study was disclosed.
Story explains that this is "the first drug to improve advanced melanoma patients’ survival in a large, definitive trial."
The story was clear about the experimental stage of the approach.
The novelty – that is "the first drug to improve advanced melanoma patients’ survival in a large, definitive trial" – was explained.
It’s clear the story didn’t rely on a news release.