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The National Library of Medicine Announces the 2015 Association of Health Care Journalists-NLM Journalism Fellows

The 2015 Association of Health Care Journalists (AHCJ)-National Library of Medicine (NLM) Fellows class features nine reporters and editors representing diverse media backgrounds, NLM announced today.

The 2015 AHCJ-NLM Fellows are:

  • Parker Brown, staff writer, MedPage Today
  • Kay Colby, health producer, WVIZ/PBS, WCPN/NPR, ideastream
  • Andrea King Collier, independent journalist, Lansing, Mich.
  • Alison Fitzgerald, correspondent, National Public Radio
  • Lisa Gillespie, reporter, Kaiser Health News
  • Marlene Harris-Taylor, medical editor/health writer, The Toledo (Ohio) Blade
  • Matthew Perrone, health reporter, Associated Press
  • Rebecca Shannonhouse, editor in chief, Bottom Line/Health
  • Alexander Smith, health/science reporter, KCUR-Kansas City / Heartland Health Monitor

Now in its seventh year, the program brings journalists selected by AHCJ to NLM for four days of training to better use some of NLM's health information resources, such as PubMed, PubMed Health, Genetics Home Reference, TOXMAP,, HSRProj, and MedlinePlus. This year’s Fellows class will be at NLM Sept. 28-Oct. 1.

The 2015 AHCJ-NLM Fellows also will receive briefings about health care issues, such as the adoption of electronic health records by patients and health care providers, as well as consumer health resources provided by the National Cancer Institute. For the second year, the Fellows will meet with the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute to learn more about comparative clinical effectiveness research.

"The range of media backgrounds stands out in the 2015 class," said Rob Logan, PhD, who coordinates the AHCJ-NLM Fellows for NLM.

"Internet based and legacy media are well represented, as are newsletters, blogs, newspapers, magazines, and broadcast news,” added Len Bruzzese, AHCJ’s executive director. “The selected fellows represent a great cross-section of who is working out there,”

"NLM is proud that the program's alumni have integrated health informatics resources into their health news reporting and editing," Logan noted. “For example, Christine Gorman, health/medicine editor at Scientific American, started a blog to help consumers use the Internet to find health information after her 2013 AHCJ-NLM Journalism Fellowship.”

“Our Fellows will be exposed to some amazing tools and resources they’ll be able to put to use very quickly,” Bruzzese said.

“We had a record number of applicants this year, showing the desire by journalists to enhance their skills continues to grow,” Bruzzese said.

AHCJ is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing public understanding of health care issues. With more than 1,500 members, AHCJ’s mission is to improve the quality, accuracy and visibility of health care reporting, writing and editing. The association and its Center for Excellence in Health Care Journalism are based at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism.

“Health care journalists play a key role in informing the public. It’s gratifying when our information services help them do their important work more effectively,” said NLM Acting Director Betsy L. Humphreys, who will meet with the AHCJ-NLM Fellows during their stay.

Since its founding in 1836, the National Library of Medicine has played a pivotal role in translating biomedical research into practice and is a leader in information innovation. NLM is the world's largest medical library, and millions of scientists, health professionals and the public around the world use NLM services every day.