Skip to main content.

Reporting the Shortened Lives Series: Lessons Learned

Reporting the Shortened Lives Series: Lessons Learned

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

Former health journalism Fellows Suzanne Bohan and Sandy Kleffman, colleagues at the Bay Area News Group, teamed up to write Shortened Lives, a groundbreaking series on how where you live affects your health – and won a White House Correspondents' Association award for their efforts.

Today, they shared some of the lessons they learned while researching Shortened Lives with USC/California Endowment National Health Journalism Fellows meeting in Los Angeles this week.

Here's just a sampling:

1. Find your people first, because that's what takes the most time. "The research will always be there," Bohan said.

2. In reporting on social determinants of health, anticipate and be able to answer questions from editors and readers on the role of personal responsibility in living a healthy life.

3. Get buy-in from your local public health officials. They can help you find and crunch data to guide your reporting.

Bohan and Kleffman have written an excellent essay for ReportingonHealth on how they reported the series and a useful resource guide for your own reporting.  I'll hope you'll check them out!

Leave A Comment

Announcements

The Center for Health Journalism is dedicated to supporting journalists covering two of the biggest stories of our time — the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism and inequities in America. We provide reporters with intensive training instituteswebinars and tips about craft and content and are providing deep and sustained support for reporters and their newsrooms in this historic and difficult moment. You can donate through the USC web portal at this link. Pressed for time? You can also text to donate! No amount is too small; just send a text to 41-444 and type the message CHJ for further instructions.

CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY

Follow Us

Facebook


Twitter

CHJ Icon
ReportingHealth