Fellows chosen for 2018 National Cancer Reporting Fellowships

Pia Christensen

About Pia Christensen

Pia Christensen (@AHCJ_Pia) is the managing editor/online services for AHCJ. She manages the content and development of healthjournalism.org, coordinates AHCJ's social media efforts and edits and manages production of association guides, programs and newsletters.

A dozen journalists have been chosen for the 2018 class of the National Cancer Reporting Fellowships. AHCJ will be presenting the fellowships with expertise from the National Cancer Institute and others. The program is being supported by the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.

The fellows will spend four days on the campus of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., to increase their understanding of and ability to report accurately on complex scientific findings, provide insight into the work of cancer researchers and to better localize cancer-related stories.

The fellows will gather in Bethesda the week of Nov. 12 for a series of presentations, discussions, database sessions, a lab tour and interactions with researchers and fellow journalists.

The 2018 fellowship class includes:

  • Jessie Bekker, health care reporter, Las Vegas Review-Journal (@jessiebekks)
  • Ryan Cross, assistant editor, Chemical & Engineering News (@RLCscienceboss)
  • Yen Duong, reporter, North Carolina Health News (@yenergy)
  • Jessica Glenza, health reporter, The Guardian (@jessicaglenza)
  • Liz Highleyman, editor in chief, Cancer Health (@LizCancerHealth)
  • Mikayla Mace, science and higher education reporter, Arizona Daily Star
  • Heather Mongilio, reporter, The Frederick (Md.) News-Post (@Hmongilio)
  • Roxanne Nelson, independent journalist, Bellingham, Wash. (@nabeep)
  • Sarah Owermohle, health care reporter, Politico (@owermohle)
  • Ned Pagliarulo, senior editor, BioPharma Dive (@NedPagliarulo)
  • Xiaoqing Rong, reporter, Sing Tao Daily
  • Kate Yandell, digital editor, Cancer Today (@kateyandell)

The training sessions will include:

  • Moonshots, dream teams and wars on cancer: What’s ahead?
  • Deep dive: Immunotherapy
  • Cancer evidence by the numbers
  • Hands-on exercises: How to understand and relay cancer statistics
  • The world of guidelines and cancer screening
  • Social determinants: Addressing disparities in access to quality health care and clinical trials
  • How clinical trials work
  • Hands-on exercises: Using SEER and exploring cancer clinical trials
  • Deep dive: Genomics
  • Storybuilding: Including patients in the equation
  • Deep dive: Diet and cancer risk
  • Clinical center tours

The fellows were selected from dozens of qualified applicants.

“We are happy to tap into the expertise of the National Cancer Institute once again to offer this training to highly interested journalists,” said AHCJ Executive Director Len Bruzzese. “We believe this deep dive provides story preparation not found elsewhere and we appreciate the continued support of the Helmsley Charitable Trust in bringing it to reporters and editors.”

The Association of Health Care Journalists is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing public understanding of health care issues. With about 1,500 members across the United States and around the globe, its mission is to improve the quality, accuracy and visibility of health care reporting, writing and editing. The association and its Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism provide training, resources and a professional home for journalists. Offices are based at the Missouri School of Journalism.

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