JOURNALIST Q&A: Jennifer Cook

Being the nation's most popular health magazine wasn't enough for Prevention, the Rodale publication that's a mainstay in supermarket checkout aisles. The magazine recently redesigned the pages to make them more user-friendly. Here, executive editor Jennifer Cook talks to PRWeek about the new look.

Being the nation's most popular health magazine wasn't enough for Prevention, the Rodale publication that's a mainstay in supermarket checkout aisles. The magazine recently redesigned the pages to make them more user-friendly. Here, executive editor Jennifer Cook talks to PRWeek about the new look.

PRWeek: What inspired the new layout and design? Jennifer Cook: The changes were spurred, in part, by the results of a yearlong Women's Health Study, which looked at American women's needs, motivations, concerns, and values. We found that women make an active effort to stay informed about health issues and that they give health information and advice to others. As the gatekeepers of their families' health, they need access to the most current, most clearly presented health information out there, so that they can make decisions quickly and easily about how to keep themselves and their loved ones well. We used the study results to make the magazine even more compelling for our 11.6 million readers. For example, we reorganized the magazine's sections into six new departments, each with its own distinctive color tabs. This makes it easy to flip through to a particular section. We also added an index at the front of the magazine which lists all of the health topics in each issue. These changes are designed to give women quicker access to the cutting edge health information we provide. PRWeek: Was there any concern about changing a look that, as the US' biggest-circulation health title, clearly works for readers? Cook: We deliver comprehensive health and medical news. That hasn't changed. What has changed is that the magazine is easier to navigate, with a fresher, more contemporary look, and editorial that is more compelling because it's easier to access. PRWeek: Will any new editorial focuses accompany the change to the physical magazine? Cook: With the January issue, Prevention unveiled not just a new logo and layout, but also several new columns and a broader approach to health coverage that extends to family health (the aforementioned study indicated that women feel they lack sufficient family health advice). The six new departments include: News & Trends; Food & Nutrition; Alternatives; Fitness; Beauty; and Family. New columns include: Appetites, Healthy Home, and Midlife Motherhood. We'll also do more investigative stories, such as looking at the hazards of online drug purchases. PRWeek: Prevention has enhanced its coverage of alternative health. Are you finding that your readers are becoming more interested in alternative treatments? Cook: In our reader surveys, we've been asked for more coverage of alternative health. Readers find our coverage very interesting and useful. And letters from readers indicate that they are keen on learning about natural remedies for everyday problems. Specifically, they want trustworthy information on alternatives to traditional OTC and prescription remedies, such as herbs, vitamins, teas, and supplements - and we provide it. ----- Name Jennifer Cook Publication Prevention Title Executive editor Preferred contact method jenny.cook@rodale.com Website www.prevention.com

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