Nov. 11 Health Coverage Workshop offers something for all journalists, even their bosses

Kentucky faces many unique health challenges, but they don’t get enough news coverage, which hamstrings the state and its communities from fully addressing their health problems. These challenges and how to tackle them from a news perspective will be addressed at the Health Coverage Workshop on Nov. 11 at Natural Bridge State Resort Park in Slade.

The workshop is open to any Kentucky journalist, from those who are just starting to cover health issues to those with years of experience in the subject matter, and it offers something for everyone: reporters, editors, news directors, publishers, photojournalists and everyone in between. The workshop is free, thanks to the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky.

Specific health topics will include oral health, smoking, obesity and cancer, where to find information on these issues and how to localize it for your audience. Revenue building through special health sections will also be addressed.

Several guest speakers will discuss their areas of specialization. Van Ingram, of the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy, and Kentucky Health News Senior Reporter Melissa Patrick will talk about how to cover one of Kentucky’s biggest, most complicated problems: opioid dependency and the consequences that follow.

Al Cross, director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues, will discuss several topics, including proposed Medicaid changes and their implications for your readers, as well as the basics of managed care organizations that handle Medicaid for the state.

Jennifer P. Brown of the Kentucky New Era in Hopkinsville and Sharon Burton of the Adair County Community Voice in Columbia will discuss, respectively, how a small newspaper can cover health and how newspapers can use health sections to gain revenue and serve readers who need more health information.

Finally, Cynthia Lamberth of the Kentucky Population Health Institute will talk about how to look for health policy in all stories.

Natural Bridge has made available a small block of rooms for those participants who would like to arrive the night before. Call the park at 800-325-1710 to make a reservation.

To register for the workshop, complete this registration form as soon as possible.

Direct questions to Danielle Ray at

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