Around the Wire: 4 Healthcare News Trends We're Following
A look at the health industry news from PR Newswire in September and October that you might have missed.
By Wendy Brickner, Cliff Moore | Published Nov. 10, 2022
PR Newswire regularly sends out a great deal of healthcare press releases that cover numerous topics. For example, more than 6,500 healthcare-related releases went out via PR Newswire in September and October.
This two-month period brought us awareness and education on two very important topics in healthcare: mental health and breast cancer. September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, while October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
And as we moved into fall, we moved into flu season. Organizations are encouraging people to get their flu shots, discussing new vaccine technology, and educating consumers on the risks of the flu.
Let’s take a look at the healthcare trends we have noticed over this two-month period.
Some of the Most Popular Healthcare Releases:
Over the past two months, these healthcare press releases received a standout number of reads and/or engagement:
- Mentions of COVID were still very prevalent during the last two months. One of the top performing healthcare releases belonged to Gladstone Institute and its study of a single-dose, intranasal treatment that protects against severe SARS-CoV-2 infection.
- In October, a new rule from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration established a new category of over-the-counter hearing aids. Sony Electronics announced its first two OTC hearing aid products for the U.S. market soon after.
- Kroger, one of the largest grocery store chains in the U.S., alerted pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts, Inc. that it plans to terminate their pharmacy provider agreement for commercial customers at the end of the year unless a new agreement is reached.
- The Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center is doing interesting research on autism spectrum disorder. A doctor is using his experience as a brain tumor expert to investigate possible improved treatment.
- In new health product news, Kourtney Kardashian Barker announced her new vitamin and supplement brand called Lemme.
Healthcare News Trends
Here’s a look at a few of the trends we noticed among healthcare-related press releases in September and October, with a few examples of each.
1. Mental Health
As the stigma around mental health diminishes, information surrounding the topic has only increased. New research, statistics, and resources are released daily, only further promoting visibility, advocacy, and awareness of the critical role mental health plays in our everyday lives.
September marked National Suicide Prevention Month and National Suicide Prevention Week was observed from Sept. 4-10. And on October 10, World Mental Health Day was celebrated.
PR Newswire distributed 949 releases mentioning “mental health” between September and October, 220 releases more than in July and August.
Releases ranged from surveys, polls, and research to companies’ advocacy efforts, and new educational resources released by healthcare companies, to name just a few.
Below are a sample of stories released in September and October:
- New Perception Poll Shows Adults in the U.S. See Mental Health and Suicide as High Priority Issues, and Still Face Barriers to Seeking Help
- Mental Health, Access Among Patients' Primary Health Concerns
- The Trevor Project Honors Janelle Monáe with Annual Suicide Prevention Advocate of the Year Award
- Maybelline NY Launches Free Mental Health Training in Colleges
- Paramount Media Networks & MTV Entertainment Studios launches Hidden Healers, a mental health series that elevates BIPOC voices and communities
- The Black Man Project Commits to Eliminating Barriers to Mental Health for Men
2. Breast Cancer Awareness
Since 1985, October has been designated as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In September, just before the start of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, journalist Katie Couric announced she had been diagnosed with breast cancer earlier this year. According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer accounts for about 30% of all new cancer cases in women each year in the United States.
September and October saw 236 press releases mentioning “breast cancer” sent via PR Newswire, compared to 90 in July and August, a 162% increase.
Press releases about breast cancer covered many topics – from the importance of screenings to reports on healthcare inequities, corporate giving, and awareness. Here are a few examples:
- Barco® Uniforms Launches Skechers® By Barco Limited Edition Capsule Collection in Honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month
- SurvivorNet Announces SurvivorNetTV's Special New Programming Slate Marking Breast Cancer Awareness Month
- Susan G. Komen® Expands Breast Cancer Screening and Diagnostics Program
- GUESS Watches Launches Sparkling and Sporting Pink Timepieces Supporting the Get In Touch Foundation for Breast Health Awareness and Education
- Avocados From Mexico® and Susan G. Komen® are Painting the Produce Aisle Pink this October
- New ACS Report: Decrease in Breast Cancer Mortality Rate Continues; Wide Gap for Black Women Remains Stagnant
3. Flu Season
While the COVID-19 pandemic remains a prevalent topic, September and October saw an uptick in releases for a different illness: the flu. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. flu season occurs in the fall and winter, and it peaks between December and February. Experts are warning it could be a rough flu season, and the flu is already starting to spread in the U.S.
Mentions of "flu season" and "flu shots" picked up in September and October. “Flu” mentions in September and October more than doubled (113) compared to July and August (50).
Here are a few examples from September and October:
- It's Time to Get Your Flu Shot; What You Need to Know About the 2022-2023 Flu Season
- Actor Jason Alexander and American Nurses Association Encourage People Across the Country to Get their Flu Shot to Help Protect Against Flu and its Complications
- New Data at OPTIONS XI Conference Highlight Burden of Seasonal Influenza on Health Systems and the Need for Increased Vaccination Rates
- Mucinex® Fast-Max Cold & Flu All In One Celebrates Your Comeback from Cold & Flu Symptoms by Giving 120 Lucky Winners a Special Re-Do for a Missed Moment with its Pop-Up "Missing Booth"
- Ad Council, AMA, and CDC Urge Flu Vaccinations with "Get My Flu Shot" Campaign
- The Vitamin Shoppe Launches "Snax for Vax" Campaign with Free Giveaway of Healthy Snacks to Anyone Receiving a Flu Vaccine this Season
As flu season gets into full swing, we should expect the number of mentions in press releases to only increase.
4. Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare
As the world further propels itself into the digital age, the healthcare industry has followed suit tenfold.
Algorithms and machine learning have helped health companies deliver better care for their clients and patients by enabling them to process information faster and more accurately. New products, services, and other offerings have resulted from this growing utilization and many companies are even partnering to further expand their capabilities.
Through September and October, here are a handful of stories sent via PR Newswire:
- Solera Health Launches First-of-Its-Kind Women's Health Offering That Addresses Women's Needs at Each Stage of Life
- AdTheorent Health Unveils the Industry's First and Only Predictive Audiences for Health Advertisers
- Haleon and Microsoft use AI to enhance health product accessibility for people who are blind or partially sighted
- Google Cloud Delivers on the Promise of AI and Data Interoperability with New Medical Imaging Suite
- Akon Lighting and GATC Health Announce Partnership to Analyze and Provide AI-driven Genomic Insights to Over 1 Million People Across Africa
- Discovery Behavioral Health Partners with MyClearStep To Enhance Remote Treatment of Eating Disorders
COVID-19 is still a hot topic in healthcare with threats of a fall/winter "twindemic" or "tripledemic" with COVID, the flu, and RSV on the rise. But as summer turned to fall, we saw a shift to companies and organizations focusing on different aspects of healthcare and lending their resources to mental health and breast cancer awareness, along with a focus on bettering the healthcare experience with technology.
About the Authors
Wendy Brickner is a Senior Customer Content Specialist in PR Newswire's Customer Content Services department. She has been with the company since 2007. Outside of work, her favorite things are traveling, spending time with family and friends, and relaxing with her giant Golden Retriever, Roosevelt.
Cliff Moore is a Senior Customer Content Specialist in PR Newswire's Customer Content Services Department and has been with the company since 2013. When not assisting clients with their press release needs, he enjoys all things pop culture, plants, hosting gatherings, and playing any game you can think of.