9 items published last week

Improving the public dialogue about health care

Digest of what we published last week


First, a look at the five systematic, criteria-driven news story reviews we published last week:  

Independent Perspectives In This Story Put Vitamin D Benefits In Context

   5 Star


 Coverage of "Breakthrough" Lung Cancer Drug Lacks Data on Benefits

2 Star


Big Blueberry Claims Based on Small Study

2 Star


"A better way to help people quit smoking?" We offer some suggestions for a better way to report this. 

 3 Star


Head Start Might Help Fight Obesity?: Was This an Apples-to-Apples Comparison?  

  3 Star










Mentioned in our blog last week: 

  • Regarding that same study, a BBC story allowed a quote to go unchallenged: "it's just not fair to attribute the mis-reporting of this to journalists - they've just copied what's in the journal and in the press release." We disagree.
  • When last Friday wrapped up, there was a pile of things I wished we'd addressed earlier, but hadn't.  So I posted a Friday file with brief mention of all of this and more
    • "Is widespread screening for hepatitis C justified?" - The BMJ. 
    • Who will notice that BMJ piece? And who will report on it accurately?
    • "60 Minutes Stumbles on How Health Insurance Works" - Dan Munro on Forbes. 
    • "NBC Nightly News Wields the Power of Pandering in 'Power of Prayer' Report" - Prof. William London
    • "When Diabetes Treatment Treatment Goes Too Far"
    • "Doing More for Patients Often Does No Good"
    • And Eric Topol's skeptical Tweet: 

Since we re-launched our full-fledged publishing efforts just a few days ago, three donor gifts have already arrived.  If you care to help ensure the future of this project, please click the Give Now button.  Thank you. 


Gary Schwitzer 
Publisher, HealthNewsReview.org
Adjunct Associate Professor
University of Minnesota School of Public Health

This project is now supported by a generous grant from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation.     


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