Gates grant for PBS News Hour


The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is making a $3.5 million grant over three years to back a dedicated production unit at “The News Hour with Jim Lehrer” which will report on global health issues. The grant is being administered through WETA Washington, DC, which is a co-producer of the daily news program which airs on PBS stations across the nation.

The Gates Foundation grant will enable The NewsHour to significantly expand its broadcast and online coverage of major global health issues affecting developing nations, such as malaria, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, measles and neglected diseases.  The NewsHour will also report on how global health challenges are being addressed from both scientific and public policy perspectives. 

Over the three-year life of the grant, NewsHour correspondents will travel around the world to produce approximately 40-50 documentary style reports on major global health issues.  These reports will air on The NewsHour’s daily PBS broadcast and will be distributed via The NewsHour’s digital platforms, along with original web-based global health content. 

“Health stories and international reporting have always been important to The NewsHour and our audience. Thanks to the support of the Gates Foundation, we now have the resources to give global health the attention it deserves.” said Linda Winslow, Executive Producer of The NewsHour.

“In recent years we have seen extraordinary progress against some of the greatest health problems in developing countries, and many compelling stories have yet to be told,” said Joe Cerrell, Director of Global Health Policy and Advocacy at the Gates Foundation.

The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer is seen five nights a week on more than 315 PBS stations across the country and is also available online, via public radio in select markets and via podcast.  The program is produced by MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, in association with WETA, Washington, DC and Thirteen/WNET in New York.  Corporate funding for The NewsHour is provided by Chevron, Pacific Life, Vestas and Grant Thornton, along with major funding from the Atlantic Philanthropies, the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and public television viewers.