Monday, October 19, 2020

Health reporters, editors, news director to discuss 'Covering the Pandemic' in online program at 7 p.m. ET Thursday

The world’s biggest story in 75 years is also a local story for everyone: the coronavirus pandemic. It has posed special challenges for news organizations at a time when they were already challenged: the politicization of public health, pushback from audiences, confusing data, and pandemic fatigue – among audiences and journalists.

To help journalists with this story, the Bluegrass Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists will hold an online panel discussion, “Covering the Pandemic,” at 7 p.m. ET Thursday, Oct. 22. The panelists will all be from Kentucky, but the discussion should be helpful anywhere in the country:

• Alex Acquisto, health reporter, Lexington Herald-Leader

• Jennifer P. Brown of Hopkinsville, who recovered from Covid-19 and wrote about it in her online newspaper, Hoptown Chronicle

• Ben Sheroan, editor, The News-Enterprise of Elizabethtown, who will speak to the pushback newspapers receive from their coverage of the pandemic

• Brian Neal, news director at Lexington’s WLEX-TV, who will address the fatigue factor experienced by journalists

The discussion will be moderated by Melissa Patrick, reporter for Kentucky Health News.

There is no charge to attend the program, which will be held via Zoom, but registration to receive the Zoom link is required. To register, send an email to

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