Tag Archives: #ahcj18

Navigating the brave new world of artificial intelligence

Rebecca Vesely

About Rebecca Vesely

Rebecca Vesely is AHCJ's topic leader on health information technology and a freelance writer. She has written about health, science and medicine for AFP, the Bay Area News Group, Modern Healthcare, Wired, Scientific American online and many other news outlets.

You might be receiving a lot more PR pitches about artificial intelligence (AI) in your inbox these days. Gideon Gil, managing editor of Stat, has. Gil moderated a panel at Health Journalism 2018 on AI that aimed to help reporters and editors distinguish between hype and reality.

Briefly, AI is an artificial system that can perceive its environment and takes independent action to produce a result. AI products typically demonstrate behaviors associated with human intelligence such as learning, planning, movement and problem solving. Continue reading

Free health data for journalists: How to make the most of it

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.

Anna Ibarra

Health care data are increasingly being collected by nonprofits and private companies as part of their work and business – the good news for reporters is this data can be easily accessible and at no cost.

As long as it’s used responsibly, data collected by commercial entities can often help journalists write about an issue in a quicker and more timely manner, said Casey Ross, national correspondent at Stat News, during a panel at a Health Journalism 2018.

Ross was joined by Jim Rivas of Doximity, an online network of more than 1 million medical professionals in the U.S., and Josh Gray, vice president of athenaResearch and health care reporter Felice J. Freyer of The Boston Globe, who moderated the panel.

Read their tips for getting and using data.

Tips for freelancers to unleash their inner entrepreneur

Jocelyn Wiener

About Jocelyn Wiener

Jocelyn Wiener is an award-winning independent journalist based in Oakland, Calif. She writes regularly for Kaiser Health News and the Center for Health Reporting. Her work has run in The Washington Post, The Atlantic, the Christian Science Monitor, Pacific Standard and newspapers around the country.

Two top freelancers at Health Journalism 2018 – Linda Marsa and Heather Boerner – and attorney Ruth Carter offered a series of great tips to help you start thinking of your freelance work as a real business … and make it pay like one.

Marsa kicked off the session, “Unleash your inner entrepreneur,” with advice about getting a good mix of work, and getting paid for it: Continue reading

Like public health officials, reporters should ready BEFORE the next pandemic arrives

Tara Haelle

About Tara Haelle

Tara Haelle (@TaraHaelle) is AHCJ's medical studies core topic leader, guiding journalists through the jargon-filled shorthand of science and research and enabling them to translate the evidence into accurate information.

Photo: DFID-UK Department for International Development via Wikimedia

It can seem next to impossible to prepare for a threat you know will come without knowing what it will be, where it comes from, how it will travel, how bad it will be and where it will go. Yet that’s what thousands of public health officials and health care providers do on an ongoing basis in order to be ready for whatever infectious disease next threatens to become a pandemic.

During Health Journalism 2018, Bara Vaida, AHCJ’s core topic leader on infectious diseases, moderated a panel discussing what’s necessary to be ready for pandemics. That includes the barriers to being fully prepared, many facets related to an outbreak (including the health and safety of responders on the front line) and the challenge this presents for journalists covering public health. Continue reading

Researchers warn that evidence about microbiome’s role is preliminary

Bara Vaida

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.

Jonathan Bailey, National Human Genome Research Institute, NIH via Flickr

PHOENIX – Journalists who write about health claims connected to the microbiome – the army of bacteria that live on and in the body – should exercise skepticism because most research has yet to determine the microbiome’s precise role in health and disease.

In fact, the scientific evidence is still so scant, probiotics sold on the market, like Culturelle, are probably not as beneficial as advertised, two scientists who spoke at AHCJ’s annual conference said. Continue reading

Examining the latest efforts in integrative health

Mary Otto

About Mary Otto

Mary Otto, a Washington, D.C.-based freelancer, is AHCJ's topic leader on oral health and the author of "Teeth: The Story of Beauty, Inequality, and the Struggle for Oral Health in America." She can be reached at mary@healthjournalism.org.

Photo: City of Santa Clarita via Flickr

In the face of sky-rocketing rates of chronic disease and addiction, some health care leaders are searching beyond pills and procedures for solutions to America’s health care crisis.

They are turning toward integrative health, a field that combines conventional Western medicine with self-care coaching and complementary therapies such as meditation and acupuncture.

“We do not have a chronic disease model that works. That is why we are in a crisis in health care,” said physician Wayne B. Jonas, speaking at the panel “Newest Efforts in Integrative Health” during Health Journalism 2018. Continue reading