Tag Archives: tip sheets

Tip sheet can aid your reporting on COVID-19 serology/antibody testing

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: NIAID via FlickrColorized scanning electron micrograph of an apoptotic cell (blue) infected with SARS-COV-2 virus particles (red), isolated from a patient sample.

For the first six weeks of the pandemic, problems with PCR testing for the COVID-19 viral infection dominated headlines. Now that serology testing — testing for antibodies to COVID-19 — is picking up steam, there is important context and uncertainty that readers may not be getting.

A new AHCJ tip sheet addresses some of the most important questions to address in reporting on serology testing, as well as recommended reading on the topic. For example, this Lifehacker article does a great job of laying out some of the significant issues with antibody testing. Continue reading

COVID-19 and older adults tip sheet offers story ideas, resources

Liz Seegert

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.

Photo: Emil Kabanov via Flickr

There’s still a lot we don’t yet know about the novel coronavirus, but one thing is clear: older adults are among those at highest risk. A majority of deaths worldwide from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, have occurred in the 60-plus population. U.S. health officials are advising anyone over 60, or those with serious chronic medical conditions, to stay home for the next month. Continue reading

New tip sheet provides overview of Parkinson’s disease

Liz Seegert

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.

Photo: Peter T. via FlickrLegendary boxer Muhammad Ali, shown after receiving the 2012 Liberty Medal in Philadelphia, Pa., had lived with Parkinson’s disease for more than 30 years before dying in 2016 at age 74.

We probably all know at least one older person who has developed Parkinson’s disease, a degenerative neurological condition which affects one in every hundred people over age 60.

A small proportion (about 4 percent) of adults under age 50 can develop it too. The National Institutes of Health estimates that one million people in the United States are living with this condition. As the population ages, incidence will likely increase, putting more pressure on the health system at a time when funding for federal health and science programs and research is under pressure.

Parkinson’s affects a person’s movement, speech, cognition, balance and behavior. There is no known cure, nor can symptoms be reversed, though they can be managed through a regimen of multiple medications and therapy. The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation estimates direct and indirect costs of the disease in the United States at around $25 billion annually. Continue reading

‘Telemental’ services provide new health care option for older adults

Liz Seegert

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.

Photo: Kimberly B. via Flickr

Photo: Kimberly B. via Flickr

Telehealth services are gaining ground as a means to expand reach and keep health costs down.

But what about telemental health? On one hand, it could be a boon for older adults who may be isolated or otherwise unable to visit a mental health practitioner in person. However, as the American Telehealth Association notes, “the service must be provided to an eligible Medicare beneficiary in an eligible facility (originating site) located outside of a Metropolitan Statistical Area” or in a health professional shortage area (HPSA).” Continue reading

New tip sheet offers ideas for reporting on drug therapies

Liz Seegert

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.

drug-therapy-graphstockEffective reporting requires health journalists to be comfortable independently evaluating clinical studies and drawing their own conclusions about data. If you just rely on information from press releases, it’s akin to committing “journalistic malpractice,” as AHCJ Vice President Ivan Oransky often warns.

A new tip sheet from Bonny P. McClain adds to this fountain of knowledge. McClain explores why and how The International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) can be a valuable partner in navigating our complex and ever-changing health system. Continue reading

Pew study provides trends watch on the dental care access front

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: Looli via Flickr

In spite of progress getting better dental care to more children in recent years, it is estimated that more than one-third of Americans still face challenges in getting the oral health services they need.

Lack of money or insurance to pay for care, a shortage of providers in many communities, and challenges with mobility and transportation continue to pose formidable barriers, according to a recent brief from the Pew Charitable Trusts. Continue reading