Skip to main content

Advertisement

Table 1 Results from review of 1,854 health news stories by HealthNewsReview.org

From: Addressing tensions when popular media and evidence-based care collide

Criterion No. of satisfactory scores No. of unsatisfactory scores No. of not applicable (N/A) scores Percentage of satisfactory scores (total minus N/A)
Costs 476 1,087 291 30%
Benefits 623 1,204 27 34%
Harms 626 1,158 70 35%
Evidence 713 1,137 4 39%
Disease-mongering 1,385 397 72 78%
Sources/conflict of interest 1,021 829 4 55%
Alternatives 781 1,021 52 43%
Availability 1,227 450 177 76%
Novelty 1,372 381 101 78%
Rely on press release* 1,329 120 405 92%
  1. * The criterion asking whether the story appeared to rely solely or largely on a news release requires some explanation. Note the high number of not applicable (N/A) scores. In order to make a judgment on this criterion, reviewers must have a copy of a news release. Because a news release is not always available, many stories are graded N/A. The percentage of satisfactory scores may seem high; another perspective is that the fact that 120 supposedly independently reported stories were found to rely solely or largely on a news release is troubling.