Newswise — The GW Nursing Journalism Award recognizes excellence in health care and health policy reporting for journalists using nurses as key sources.

This award was created by the GW School of Nursing’s Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement in response to the fact that nurses are underrepresented as expert sources in the media. The Woodhull Study on Nursing and the Media: Health Care’s Invisible Partner, published in 1998, found that nurses were identified as sources in only 4% of quotes or other sourcing in health news stories and were never cited in health news stories on policy. Twenty years later, the Woodhull Study Revisited: Nurses’ Representation in Health News Media 20 Years Later found that representation of nurses in the media has not improved. Even though nurses were ranked the most-trusted profession in the United States for the twentieth year by Gallup’s 2019 poll assessing ethics and honesty, journalists are not familiar with nurses’ responsibilities and how nurses might be able to contribute to their stories.

This award is intended to encourage and recognize the journalists who are helping to move the needle when it comes to nurses’ representation in health news and media.

An independent panel of GW School of Nursing faculty members, journalists, and other members of the media judged the nominated publications. The pieces were judged on their quality use of nursing sources, the insights generated by the reporting, the impact on health care policy, and the overall quality of reporting.

The following individuals served as the judges for the inaugural award cycle.

Theresa Brown works as a clinical nurse. She is a New York Times bestselling author for her book, The Shift: One Nurse, Twelve Hours, Four Patients' Lives. She is also a contributor to the New York Times,, NPR, and other media outlets.

Michelle Faust Raghavan is a journalist who produces stories in print, radio, and television. She currently works as a reporter and producer specializing in health care policy at 89.3 KPCC Southern California Public Radio. 

Jessica Johnson Papaspyridis is CEO of Newswise, the world’s first technology-driven news distribution service. Newswise supplies critical breaking news in an easily digestible format to journalists, institutions of higher learning, research organizations, and individual consumers around the world.

David Keepnews is a professor of nursing and health policy faculty at GW Nursing and Director of Fellowships for the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement. He previously served as editor-in-chief of Policy, Politics and Nursing Practice. 

Richard Ricciardi is a professor and health policy faculty at GW Nursing and Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement. He is a clinical nurse and president-elect for Sigma Theta Tau International.

Sherrie Flynt Wallington is a professor at GW Nursing and a researcher with a focus on health communication, social determinants of health, and community-based participatory research strategies. She has authored several peer-reviewed publications and serves as a scientific grant reviewer.

Y. Tony Yang is a professor and health services and policy researcher at GW Nursing and the Milken Institute School of Public Health. He is also the Executive Director of the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement. His authored work has appeared in leading medical, health policy and services, public health, and health law journals. 


Amanda Schaffer
“Amid a Measles Outbreak, an Ultra-Orthodox Nurse Fights Vaccination Fears in Her Community”
New Yorker

Next up

Stay tuned for our next award cycle and be sure to nominate quality pieces of health care and health policy journalism that utilize the unique expertise and voice of nurses.

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