Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism
December 10, 2018
Outside New York State
As the nation’s media outlets face shrinking budgets and shoestring staffing, resources for journalists’ continuing education and professional development are limited.
Journalists covering health or health care beats need to be literate in many facets: health policy, public health issues, medical research, the business of health care, consumer health, and more. Without specialized training, reporters, editors, and producers are left on their own to develop understanding of these issues. The Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism, the supporting nonprofit organization for the Association of Health Care Journalists (AHCJ), aims to fill that knowledge gap through an annual four-day national conference that attracted approximately 600–800 reporters, editors, and producers, as well as health care luminaries. In 2018, NYSHealth awarded the Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism a grant to support AHCJ’s 2019 cohort of New York State Health Journalism Fellowships.
Under this grant, AHCJ will provide fellowships to 12 journalists in New York State to cover registration, lodging, and a travel stipend for AHCJ’s 2019 national conference, as well as a one-year AHCJ membership. The conference will cover a wide range of issues, both content-focused (e.g., value-based care and new payment models, health care disparities, veterans’ health) and skills-focused (e.g., understanding how to read medical studies or interpret hospital quality data). NYSHealth will work with AHCJ to establish criteria for the cohort of participating journalists, with an emphasis placed on first-time fellows. AHCJ will then recruit the applicants and select the fellows based on an application form, résumé, work samples, and employer support. Freelance journalists are also eligible for the fellowship. Additionally, the Health Foundation for Western & Central New York will sponsor six fellowships for candidates from Western and Central New York. NYSHealth’s support will extend the geographic reach to candidates from the rest of the State—further leveraging the impact of this grant.