More than just good news: we need the truth

THE recent spate of disasters confirms that bad news ‘rates’. Whenever there is a disaster and loss of life on a grand scale, we get saturation coverage in the media.

The people who bring us the news work on the assumption that bad news will attract viewers and readers, whereas good news will not. As the media is driven by ratings and circulation, you can be pretty sure that we are watching and reading about disasters.

Medicine, on the other hand, is the exact opposite. There is barely a bad news research story. It must be assumed that doctors are quite different to the general population. We are apparently only interested in good news stories. 

When was the last time you saw a headline about how a drug doesn’t have much effect? This rubs off on the mainstream media’s reporting of research, as well. There is no shortage of bad news health stories but they are rarely about negative trial results.

Is there a