In this report, the terms “health journalism”, “health news” and “health reports” are used to cover the wide range of reports on health issues, including coverage of health policies, health care providers, public health, medical research and personal health issues. Health journalism reports on topics related to medical problems, health reports, health tips and new treatments. Among 34 journalists, 56% were women and 44% were men; most journalists (65%) had no specialized training in health reporting, 35% of journalists were not able to understand health problems and knowledge of medical terminology in 59% of them was moderate to low. The findings of this study suggest that time pressure, the unwillingness of health authorities to cooperate, and the vacuum of training received have created obstacles for health journalists to fulfill their mission.
This is most likely due to a lack of knowledge or the person's lack of ability to apply health information once found, resulting in seeking medical attention. The current study also showed that the main challenges faced by journalists in communicating health news in Iran were similar to those in other countries. Medical journalism is the news reporting (as opposed to peer-review publication) of news and medical articles. There aren't many firsts in health journalism; the typical health story explodes, at the same time, all over the world.
Therefore, we strongly recommend the development and implementation of training courses in close collaboration with the education department of the Ministry of Health and the news program professionals of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting. For example, for my thesis I needed to find the sources of health stories from two major Israeli news sites. Participants in the present study had associate's or bachelor's degrees and had not received any training in writing health news reports. However, the quality of the health news covered, in terms of accuracy and correctness, is far from ideal.
In addition, in Europe, the most widely used sources for health news and information were calls to experts, medical journals and journals, and friends.