CBS launches medical, health and wellness unit

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CBS News and Stations is adding a medical, health and wellness unit.

Leading this unit will be Senior Coordinating Producer Sara Kuzmarov, who has built an award-winning career at CBS News and “60 Minutes” over the last two decades.

The network announced the formation of the team, which will be led by Leigh Ann Winick in the top producing role and Sandra Temko as a producer.

The network is pulling from within its existing roster of talent to staff up the unit, including Dr. Jon LaPook, chief medical correspondent.

He will be joined by Dr. Céline Gounder, a  contributor who also works at KFF Health News; Stephanie Stahl, CBS Philadelphia medical reporter; CBS News’ Elaine Quijano; contributor Lisa Ling; Tom Hanson, a correspondent in the Innovation Lab team and Dr. Malika Marshall, CBS Boston medical contributor.

Anna Werner will also contribute reporting in addition to her duties in the consumer, business and MoneyWatch unit.

CBS News has been creating units for specialized reporting across its news and location stations’ platforms.

So far, CBS News Confirmed serves as a fact-checking and verification operation, seeking out “deep fakes” and other sources of bad information. It was announced in late 2023. In April 2024, the network created a weather unit.

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The network currently brands its health coverage under the name “HealthWatch.”

The full text of the memo announcing the unit from Adrienne Roark, president of content development and integration for CBS News and Stations, is below.

Hello Everyone,

I’m thrilled to announce the addition of our latest beat — a Medical, Health and Wellness Unit.

This is an exciting step forward as we continue to strengthen beats across the division to focus on areas of high interest to viewers. There is no doubt that medical and health news is important to our audience, and by centralizing our brain trust in this area, we can drive headlines and drive engagement even further across all platforms.

As a reminder, by creating these centers of excellence, we’ll significantly increase the pipeline of differentiated content for our CBS News and Stations broadcasts, streams, and digital. With specialized hubs, our team members throughout the division and across the country will now have a pathway to contribute ideas, produce stories, and share reporting tips and techniques within those subject areas. It is all about how we’re stronger together – collaborating and leveraging our collective strengths across CBS News, Stations, and CMV.

Leading this unit will be Senior Coordinating Producer Sara Kuzmarov. Sara has built an award-winning career at CBS News and 60 Minutes over the last two decades. Sara’s coverage of medical and health reporting at 60 Minutes includes an examination of racism’s impact on health, an Emmy-nominated investigation into fraudulent and underground stem cell businesses, a heartbreaking look at the devastating disease frontotemporal dementia, and a report on NYU Medical School going tuition-free. Before joining 60 Minutes, she was an assignment editor for the CBS News National Desk and worked on CBS News’ coverage of Hurricane Katrina. Sara earned a master’s degree in science and environmental Reporting from New York University.Sara will be joined on the team by Leigh Ann Winick, who will be the Lead Producer, Medical Unit. Leigh Ann comes to the unit from CBS Mornings. Also joining the team is Sandra Temko, a producer from the CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell who will be Producer, Medical Unit. Both Leigh Ann and Sandra have extensive medical coverage experience and have worked on numerous high-profile health stories, that will be an asset to the entire unit.

Among those reporting on-air for the Medical, Health and Wellness unit will be: Dr. Jon LaPook, chief medical correspondent; Dr. Céline Gounder, CBS News Contributor and Editor-at-Large for Kaiser Health News; Dr. Malika Marshall, CBS Boston Medical contributor; Stephanie Stahl, CBS Philadelphia medical reporter; CBS News veteran Elaine Quijano; CBS News Contributor Lisa Ling who will cover health and wellness; Tom Hanson, a correspondent on our Innovation Lab team will do medical investigations as will Anna Werner, who will report for both the Medical, Health and Wellness team as well as the Consumer, Business and MoneyWatch unit. As with our other beats, these correspondents will continue to report to their respective bureaus and stations covering daily news, while also being the key reporters in these areas of expertise.

The formalizing of this beat will enhance the collaboration of many medical content creators across the company who already contribute daily.

David, Chad and I look forward to what this team can accomplish working together, and we will be announcing additional reporting units shortly.

Adrienne

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