Who lives and who dies:
Will social media decide?

Macleans and the Medical Post is publishing a series of posts adapted from the 2012 Hancock Lecture, “Who Lives and Who Dies, Will Social Media Decide?” by Julia Belluz.


Hancock artworkDetails: The 2012 Annual Hart House Hancock Lecture features innovative thinkers, chosen by students, who create public discourse on current issues. This year’s lecture was given by Julia Belluz, Associate Editor at the Medical Post and a National Magazine Award-winning journalist covering health care, policy and medical politics. The lecture explored how social pressure influences our personal health choices, sometimes for the worst. Moving beyond individual choices, the lecture explored how and why certain types of evidence impact how health policies are made and examined how we can bridge the research to action gap so that we better engage with evidence as a society for more sound personal health and policy decisions.


“In the last few years, we’ve seen cases where something as trivial as a tweet literally extends a person’s life, gets them access to medical care they wouldn’t have had otherwise, and changes health policy.”
–Julia Belluz



Facebook event page: www.facebook.com

Julia Belluz recently spoke on CBC’s The Current about the potential—and potential hazards—that come with the intersection of social media and health care. You can listen here:

Julia BelluzJulia Belluz is a journalist focused on health care, policy and medical politics and works to improve discourse about health and science in the media. A journalism fellow with McMaster University, she has advised the World Health Organization on training health and science journalists from across the developing world about using research evidence to inform journalism and policy making. Ms. Belluz earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ryerson University, where she won the Gordon Sinclair fellowship, and an M.Sc. in anthropology at the London School of Economics. She has worked at The Times, The Economist’s Intelligent Life and is currently the Associate Editor at the Medical Post. Her popular blog ‘Science-ish’ is a joint project with Maclean’s, the Medical Post and the McMaster Health Forum. Read more about Julia on her website: www.juliabelluz.com


Evidence Party Workshop


Details: How to tell science from science-ish: tricks and tips for evaluating health-related statements by policymakers, opinion leaders, and the media. An intimate lunch and learn session with Julia Belluz and Prof Cameron Norman, Dalla Lana School of Public Health.


When: Tues. Nov. 6, from 12:00 – 2:00 pm
Where: East Common Room, Hart House


Visit the event page for more details.

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Will social media decide?