The Association of German Medical Journalists [Verband Deutscher Medizinjournalisten, VDMJ] awards the European Journalists’ Prize, which is sponsored by Bayer HealthCare AG and endowed with EUR 7500.
Half the prize goes to the Austrian television journalist Martin Thür for his TV feature “ATV Dokument – Volkssport Doping” [ATV Special Report – Doping in Recreational Sport], which was broadcast on June 22, 2009 on ATV, Austria’s largest private TV channel. Fast-paced, entertaining and lavishly illustrated, Thür’s report guides viewers through the world of doping, which has long since encompassed not just professional athletes but also the amateur sports scene. Thür graphically illustrates the underestimated scale of the problem and the serious health consequences. He describes the meteoric development of the booming black market for relevant substances, which is controlled by a doping mafia along the same lines as drug dealing.
Martin Thür began his career as a journalist with the regional channel P3 in St. Pölten, Austria. After various stints with other broadcasters, he now works as an editor for the ATV news department in Vienna, where he is also responsible for the production of TV special reports.
The other half of the prize is awarded to the German medical journalist Dr. Hellmuth Nordwig for his radio program “Falsche Pillen aus finsteren Kanälen – Ein Blick in die Unterwelt der Medikamentenfälscher” [Fake pills through shady channels – a look into the underworld of drug counterfeiting], which was broadcast on the Bavarian channel Bayern 2 on December 17, 2009. Nordwig examines the problem of drug counterfeiting, which has reached a global scale in the Internet age. In detailed analyses, he describes the scope of the systematic trade in counterfeit medicines, casts light on the underlying criminal interests and addresses the diverse risks to the consumer. With background music and text inserts from the film “The Third Man”, he reminds listeners that the harmful consequences of trade in “watered-down” penicillin had already been described after World War II by Graham Greene in his novel of the same name.
Dr. Hellmuth Nordwig studied chemistry in Munich, where he also received his doctorate. Since a period of work experience in the press office of Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, he has worked full-time as a freelance scientific and medical journalist, mainly for ARD radio stations (including Bayerischer Rundfunk, Westdeutscher Rundfunk and Deutschlandfunk).
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