OLD Media Moves

Health insurer funding reporting on health care by radio station

December 9, 2008

NC Policy Watch has posted a commentary about the relationship between Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, the state’s largest health insurer, and WUNC Public Radio.

The commentary states, “We have written previously about the problems with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation’s sponsorship of WUNC’s health care reporting. Last year the BCBSNC Foundation gave WUNC $113,624 to build the station’s health news capacity. In our opinion, that is a problem.

“We would be equally distressed if the North Carolina Democratic Party sponsored WUNC’s political coverage or the North Carolina Chamber sponsored the station’s business news.

“This year the BCBSNC Foundation released its first ever annual report featuring audio stories about the Foundation’s grantees. The back cover of the report says ‘Stories produced in association with WUNC.’ The WUNC logo is inside the report and on the back cover.

“It is disturbing enough that the state’s flagship public radio station would accept BCBSNC money for its health reporting. But one of the state’s leading news organizations helping a large insurance company produce its annual report is unacceptable.”

Read more here.

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