Editors at the nonprofit Rivard Report are seeking a journalist to cover community and public health, including delivery of health care services in San Antonio and the surrounding counties and their impact on communities and individuals.

The city and South Texas are majority Hispanic and home to a significant population of socio-economically challenged families. Adult and adolescent obesity and Type II diabetes are major public health challenges. Many of the area’s schoolchildren qualify for federal meal programs, while nutrition literacy and access to healthy foods remains alarmingly low in many communities.

The reporter will cover such entities as the City’s San Antonio Metropolitan Health District, the Haven for HopeSan Antonio Food Bank, and many other nonprofit organizations that meet so many different community needs. Covering local government institutions, such as the Center for Health Care Services, that deliver public and mental health services will be a big part of the job. Chronicling the impact of changing federal law on children and uninsured individuals and families also will be important, especially if the Affordable Care Act is repealed and an alternative program is not put in its place.

Health care, medical services and the biosciences together account for 172,000 jobs and nearly $30 billion in economic activity in San Antonio. The community and public health reporter will work closely with our business reporter to provide readers with a more in-depth understanding of this sector and the people and organizations driving its growth. San Antonio is home to the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio with medical, dental, and nursing schools. It also is home to a mix of for-profit and nonprofit hospitals and a new children’s hospital, an often confusing marketplace where entities compete for patients and resources, and only on occasion collaborate on community-wide needs and challenges.

We are seeking a self-starting journalist with a knack for storytelling who goes beyond reporting the news to develop stories that offer readers a deeper understanding of the challenges in the community, that bring to life the people being served and those serving them, and that focus on solutions and outcomes. We aim to help drive the public conversation and positively affect public policy decisions through greater awareness and understanding.

Given the region’s population, journalists conversant in Spanish are encouraged to apply. Database skills would be a real plus, but editors are willing to send the reporter we hire to continuing education seminars to gain such skills. The individual selected for the job will travel on occasion to surrounding cities and counties in South and Central Texas to report on the availability and delivery of services in those areas.

Salary, health care benefits, 14 days vacation after one year of employment, and a YMCA family membership are included. Applicants should send letters of interest, résumé and examples of published work to apply@rivardreport.com. Deadline for applications is Feb. 10, 2017.

San Antonio Report Staff

This article was assembled by various members of the San Antonio Report staff.