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Article: Characteristics of medical research news reported on front pages of newspapers

TitleCharacteristics of medical research news reported on front pages of newspapers
Authors
Issue Date2009
PublisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.plosone.org/home.action
Citation
Plos One, 2009, v. 4 n. 7 How to Cite?
Abstract
Background: The placement of medical research news on a newspaper's front page is intended to gain the public's attention, so it is important to understand the source of the news in terms of research maturity and evidence level. Methodology/Principal Findings: We searched LexisNexis to identify medical research reported on front pages of major newspapers published from January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2002. We used MEDLINE and Google Scholar to find journal articles corresponding to the research, and determined their evidence level. Of 734 front-page medical research stories identified, 417 (57%) referred to mature research published in peer-reviewed journals. The remaining 317 stories referred to preliminary findings presented at scientific or press meetings; 144 (45%) of those stories mentioned studies that later matured (i.e. were published in journals within 3 years after news coverage). The evidence-level distribution of the 515 journal articles quoted in news stories reporting on mature research (3% level I, 21% level II, 42% level III, 4% level IV, and 31% level V) differed from that of the 170 reports of preliminary research that later matured (1%, 19%, 35%, 12%, and 33%, respectively; chi-square test, P = .0009). No news stories indicated evidence level. Fewer than 1 in 5 news stories reporting preliminary findings acknowledged the preliminary nature of their content. Conclusions/Significance: Only 57% of front-page stories reporting on medical research are based on mature research, which tends to have a higher evidence level than research with preliminary findings. Medical research news should be clearly referenced and state the evidence level and limitations to inform the public of the maturity and quality of the source. © 2009 Lai, Lane.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/66381
ISSN
2013 Impact Factor: 3.534
2013 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.724
PubMed Central ID
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

Author Affiliations
  1. The University of Hong Kong
  2. Prince Philip Dental Hospital
DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorLai, WYYen_HK
dc.contributor.authorLane, Ten_HK
dc.date.accessioned2010-09-06T05:45:53Z-
dc.date.available2010-09-06T05:45:53Z-
dc.date.issued2009en_HK
dc.identifier.citationPlos One, 2009, v. 4 n. 7en_HK
dc.identifier.issn1932-6203en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/66381-
dc.description.abstractBackground: The placement of medical research news on a newspaper's front page is intended to gain the public's attention, so it is important to understand the source of the news in terms of research maturity and evidence level. Methodology/Principal Findings: We searched LexisNexis to identify medical research reported on front pages of major newspapers published from January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2002. We used MEDLINE and Google Scholar to find journal articles corresponding to the research, and determined their evidence level. Of 734 front-page medical research stories identified, 417 (57%) referred to mature research published in peer-reviewed journals. The remaining 317 stories referred to preliminary findings presented at scientific or press meetings; 144 (45%) of those stories mentioned studies that later matured (i.e. were published in journals within 3 years after news coverage). The evidence-level distribution of the 515 journal articles quoted in news stories reporting on mature research (3% level I, 21% level II, 42% level III, 4% level IV, and 31% level V) differed from that of the 170 reports of preliminary research that later matured (1%, 19%, 35%, 12%, and 33%, respectively; chi-square test, P = .0009). No news stories indicated evidence level. Fewer than 1 in 5 news stories reporting preliminary findings acknowledged the preliminary nature of their content. Conclusions/Significance: Only 57% of front-page stories reporting on medical research are based on mature research, which tends to have a higher evidence level than research with preliminary findings. Medical research news should be clearly referenced and state the evidence level and limitations to inform the public of the maturity and quality of the source. © 2009 Lai, Lane.en_HK
dc.languageengen_HK
dc.publisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.plosone.org/home.actionen_HK
dc.relation.ispartofPLoS ONEen_HK
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.meshBiomedical Research-
dc.subject.meshNewspapers-
dc.titleCharacteristics of medical research news reported on front pages of newspapersen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.emailLane, T:tlane@hkucc.hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityLane, T=rp00227en_HK
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.1371/journal.pone.0006103en_HK
dc.identifier.pmid19568422en_HK
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC2699539-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-67749103822en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros167039en_HK
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-67749103822&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume4en_HK
dc.identifier.issue7en_HK
dc.identifier.spagee6103-
dc.identifier.epagee6103-
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000267572200006-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Statesen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLai, WYY=34768250600en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLane, T=7101662173en_HK
dc.identifier.citeulike5079889-

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