Reporter shares how pandemic has sharpened her remote interviewing skills

About Bara Vaida

Bara Vaida (@barav) is AHCJ's core topic leader on infectious diseases. An independent journalist, she has written extensively about health policy and infectious diseases. Her work has appeared in outlets that include the National Journal, Agence France-Presse, Bloomberg News, McClatchy News Service, MSNBC, NPR, Politico and The Washington Post.

Photo: Bill Dickinson via Flickr

Reporting feature stories about COVID-19 and its impact on Americans is more critical and more challenging than ever.

These stories usually would involve dozens of hours of in-person interviews; something journalists won’t be able to do for many months to come. What kinds of stories should we tell in our communities and how can we report them?

Jessica Contrera, a writer for the local enterprise team at The Washington Post, has some ideas for journalists, including tips on reporting from a distance, getting people to open up and tell their stories in detail and interesting angles to explore.

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New resources for covering the virus that’s changed our world

About Bara Vaida

Bara Vaida (@barav) is AHCJ's core topic leader on infectious diseases. An independent journalist, she has written extensively about health policy and infectious diseases. Her work has appeared in outlets that include the National Journal, Agence France-Presse, Bloomberg News, McClatchy News Service, MSNBC, NPR, Politico and The Washington Post.

COVID-backgrounder

Photo: Babette Plana via Flickr

What a year it’s been for health care journalism to shine.

On Jan. 5, 2020, the World Health Organization issued a press release announcing a pneumonia of “unknown-cause” was circulating in Wuhan, China. By mid-January, Chinese scientists identified the cause as a coronavirus, eventually dubbed SARS-CoV-2, and publicly shared the virus’s genetic sequence. The disease caused by the virus was named COVID-19. Continue reading

Does care suffer as private equity firms buy struggling nursing homes?

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

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Photo: Gilbert Mercier via Flickr

Private equity firms are in the business of making money. On the surface, there is nothing wrong with that. However, a disturbing story in The Washington Post alleges that when private equity is involved in the buying and selling of nursing homes, things are often worse than they seem.

The story, by reporters Rebecca Tan and Rachel Chason, looks at Portopiccolo Group, which has a history of buying one- and two-star rated facilities. Continue reading

Get a chance to further your health journalism knowledge through AHCJ fellowships

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.

The 2011 AHCJ-CDC Health Journalism Fellows met with Ali S. Khan, M.D., M.P.H., assistant surgeon general and director of the CDC's Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response.

The 2011 AHCJ-CDC Health Journalism Fellows met with Ali S. Khan, M.D., M.P.H., assistant surgeon general and director of the CDC’s Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response.

AHCJ is taking applications for two of its premier fellowship programs: the AHCJ-CDC Health Journalism Fellowships and the AHCJ Reporting Fellowships on Health Care Performance.

Both programs offer journalists a chance to receive top training and a chance to find new sources and story ideas for their reporting. Continue reading

NIH director, pandemic expert discuss development, rollout of COVID-19 vaccines

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.

NIH director speaks to AHCJ Summit on Infectious DiseasesWhile describing the efforts of the National Institutes of Health and its partnerships with other agencies and pharmaceutical companies, NIH Director Francis Collins described the endeavor as “the most amazing outpouring of scientific capabilities, determination, talent that I’ve ever seen in my 27 years at NIH.”

During a recorded keynote speech at AHCJ’s Journalism Summit on Infectious Disease on Nov. 18, Collins said “The news [about recently announced vaccine trials] is extremely good. Both of these involving trials of 30,000 or more participants have been able to show that the messenger RNA-based vaccine strategy has resulted in over 90% efficacy for both of these and what appears to be a very reasonable safety record as well.” Continue reading

Journalists encouraged to beat the approaching AHCJ contest deadline

About Jeff Porter

Jeff Porter is the director of education for AHCJ and plays a lead role in planning conferences, workshops and other training events. He also leads the organization's data collection and data instruction efforts.

While 2020 is coming to a close, AHCJ wants to recognize the year’s demanding work of journalism colleagues through the Awards for Excellence in Health Care Journalism.

The contest deadline is Jan. 26 at 5 p.m. Eastern Time.

Winners of the contest are recognized at the annual awards luncheon at AHCJ’s annual conference. First-place winners earn $500 and a framed certificate. They also receive complimentary lodging for two nights and registration for the annual conference, June 24-27, in Austin.

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