About Anna Sayburn

website photoI am a freelance journalist, specialising in medicine and healthcare. Clients include The BMJ, NHS.uk website, Medscape, National Institute for Health Research and Chemist and Druggist.

Skills include evidence appraisal and writing clearly about complex medical topics for a lay audience. I  have experience in writing, editing, commissioning and organising expert round table events. I write for both general and specialist media.

I deliver training in science media skills and communication, most recently to the media team at Asthma UK.

I was a finalist in the Medical Journalist Association’s Freelance of the Year award – here’s what the judges said:

“We were impressed by Anna’s ability to handle complex topics clearly and expertly for the lay reader.”

Covid-19 2020

My fact-checking reports on Covid-19 are published on the COVID-19 Facts website.

Myth: red eyes mean you have coronavirus. Published in Covid-19 Facts, 14 April 2020.

Does air pollution increase deaths from Covid-19? Published in Covid-19 Facts, 9 April 2020

How do we decide who gets life-saving Covid-19 treatment? Published in Medscape, 6 April 2020

PHE upgrades PPE advice for all patient contacts with risk of infection. Published in BMJ, 3 April 2020.

Are doctors getting sufficient protective equipment against covid-19? Published in BMJ, 2 April 2020 (updated 3 April)

Does losing your sense of smell mean you have coronavirus? Published in Covid-19 Facts, 2 April 2020.

Myth: drinking hot water, or gargling, can prevent coronavirus infection. Published in Covid-19 Facts, 1 April 2020.

Myth: Taking a hot bath or sauna can kill coronavirus. Published in Covid-19 Facts, 31 March 2020.

Is primary care ready to switch to telemedicine? Published in Medscape, 27 March 2020.

Do people with blood type A have a higher risk of coronavirus infection? Published in Covid-19 Facts, 27 March 2020.

Myth: anti-malarial drugs can cure coronavirus. Published in Covid-19 Facts, 26 March 2020.

How UK doctors are coping with anxiety/distress during Covid-19. Published in Medscape, 26 March 2020.

Experts question analysis suggesting half UK population has been infected. Published in British Medical Journal, 25 March 2020.

Trials of 4 potential treatments to generate robust data of what works. Published in British Medical Journal, 24 March 2020.

Should pharmacies sell protective face masks to patients? Published in Chemist and Druggist, 23 March 2020.

Myth: pet cats and dogs are spreading coronavirus. Published in Covid-19 Facts, 19 March 2020.

Top features

Is it too soon to predict an end to cervical cancer? The impact of HPV vaccination and cervical screening. Published in Medscape.

The pharmacists saving lives with naloxone. How front-line pharmacies are providing life-saving services to opiate users. Published in Chemist and Druggist.

Who funds our patient groups – and does it matter? An investigation into pharmaceutical company funding of patient charities. Published in Medscape.

Can healthcare be green? The surprising impact of clinical care on climate change. Published in Medscape.

E-cigarettes: Smoking Cessation Aid or Dangerous Addiction? An investigation into the risks and benefits of vaping. Published in Medscape

Changing travel health demands are changing travel clinics. Insect borne-diseases push the demand for better bite protection. Published in Chemist and Druggist.

Lifestyle medicine: a new medical specialty? Can lifestyle medicine ‘save the NHS’ or is it a way to shift blame to the patient? Published in The BMJ.

Medicine too? Sexual harassment and surgery. Is sexual harassment in the surgical profession a thing of the past? It depends who you ask. Published in Royal College of Surgeons’ Bulletin.

Doctors, death and dying. I investigated how a life in medicine – and the type of specialty you pick – can change the way you think about the end of life. Published in Student BMJ.

Will the machines take over surgery? Experts in machine learning and AI talk about whether surgeons will be handed their P45s any time soon. Published in Royal College of Surgeons’ Bulletin.

What if we cured cancer? Crystal-ball gazing with oncologists, medical statisticians and cancer charities, to assess the impact of an end to the world’s top killer. Published in Royal College of Surgeons’ Bulletin.

Testimonials

Rob Cook, Clinical Director at Bazian, an Economist Intelligence Unit business

Anna is an exceptional freelance healthcare writer and editor who produces high quality work for us to tight timelines. She has a deep understanding of issues across a breadth of health topic areas, adding critical interpretation and important context to bring research to life. It is always a pleasure to work with her.

Matthew Billingsley, editor, Student BMJ, a BMJ publication

Anna is an excellent journalist who I have commissioned to write several features for Student BMJ. Each time I have given her different topics to write on she has come up with well thought-out articles that get to the heart of what our audience needs to know. Overall, I have found her really easy to work with, hardworking, resourceful, and delivers engaging and clear copy.

Rob Finch, former managing editor, NHS Choices (now NHS.uk)

Impressive. That’s the word for Anna’s work. She’s handled complex science and politically sensitive news stories with aplomb turning in great copy to extremely pressing deadlines with copy that is clear, concise and powerful.

Background

Head of Consumer Health at BMJ until 2014. I led a team of writers producing news stories, patient decision aids and in-depth health information, as part of the BMJ’s patient information service.

I’m a member of the Medical Journalists Association, the National Union of Journalists and Women In Journalism.

For my full CV and professional background, see LinkedIn.

Contact annasayburn[at]gmail.com.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s