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The Reporting on Health Member Blog

Do male doctors put hospitals at higher risk for malpractice than their female counterparts?

This year alone, I have learned of three doctors, two of whom I personally know and one who I went to medical school with, being disciplined by the Medical Board of California. They're all men. Likewise, a recent study found male doctors were more likely to be disciplined. What's going on here?

Controversial growth drug removed from some pork

US pork producers have debuted a label that assures consumers their meat was not made by giving animals ractopamine, an asthma drug-like beta agonist that increases protein synthesis

Perspective: Keeping kids healthy means keeping schools free of unhealthy food ads

There is a growing understanding that improving student health isn't just about serving healthier foods – it’s also about promoting healthier lifestyles. Reducing junk food marketing to children is a key part of that task, and San Francisco Unified has been at the leading edge of such efforts.

New report identifies $4-$8 billion waste and excess profits in mental health system

New Report by Dr. E. Fuller Torrey and Mental Illness Policy Org., identifies $4-$8 billion waste and excess profits in mental health system. It could fund services for most homeless and incarcerated mentally ill people.

Industry links to FDA commissioner nominee are questioned

Drug company links to Duke University researcher Robert Califf, nominated by the Obama administration to be FDA commissioner, are not hard to find. Califf has "served as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant or trustee for Genentech” and reports 23 links to drug companies.

For Native Americans, legacy of trauma poses heavy burden

During my fellowship project, I chose to focus on the impact of historical trauma and unresolved grief on the lives of Native peoples and ways that they are healing from the trauma and building resiliency. Here's what I learned along the way.

Why did CNN give Donald Trump a platform to spread vaccine misinformation?

With several GOP presidential candidates supporting parental choice for childhood vaccines, CNN would have done better by asking the candidates how they propose balancing individual choice with public health, rather than allowing Donald Trump to spread more misinformation about autism and vaccines.

In a world full of drug ads and online advice, 'Talk to your doctor' is more than a cliché

What does "Talk to you doctor” mean? It’s a legal and ethical security blanket. But it's also a solid piece of advice at a time when people increasingly find health info online. It also keeps doctors on their toes, as they encounter a steady barrage of new treatments and questions.

Physician aid in dying? Euthanasia? Getting the terminology straight

News outlets sometimes confuse physician aid in dying with euthanasia, as happened last week in coverage of the California legislation that would allow physicians to prescribe a lethal dose of medication for terminally ill patients. Here's a primer on getting the terms straight.

If off-label marketing is 'speech,' why even have the FDA?

 It has always been legal for U.S. doctors to prescribe drugs for off-label uses but marketing of off-label uses has been illegal.



The deadline is approaching to apply for our new all-expenses-paid Fellowship in December 2015, which will introduce 10 California journalists to the wealth of health data sources that can inform and elevate their reporting. The Fellowship includes a $1,000 reporting stipend and six months of mentoring.

Twenty-one journalists from around the country are with us in Los Angeles this week for the 2015 National Health Journalism Fellowship. Read about the Fellowship here. 


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How can journalists and foundations collaborate to deepen and improve reporting on underserved communities? Our USC Annenberg School of Journalism program in collaboration with The California Endowment, the Wyncote Foundation and Media Impact Funders, convened 75 leaders from both fields.

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