Best News Story award winner Billy Kenber with Sian Williams and Alan Sumner, who presented the trophy on behalf of principal awards sponsors Boehringer Ingelheim

Boehringer Ingelheim, the principal sponsors of the 2017 MJA Awards, presented the trophies for two awards — News Story of the Year, for a General Audience, and for Broadcast. 

The General Audience category was fiercely contested, Billy Kenber of the Times, added to his collection of accolades for  ‘Extortionate prices add £260m to NHS drugs bill‘. The story, which judges described as a “world-class investigation, with extensive biographies of the culprits, which led to a change in the law” —  also went on to win our Outstanding Contribution Award.

Andrew Gregory from The Mirror was highly commended for HIV organs used in NHS transplant for first time ever in medical breakthrough.

The award for Broadcast News Story of the Year went to Rachael Buchanan, for a report on the controversial work to grow human organs within pigs for the BBC Ten O Clock news. This news piece also served as a taster for a Panorama the following evening, Medicine’s Big Breakthrough: Editing Your Genes. Which was co-produced by Howard Bradburn, who directed the filming. Interviewing and scripting was by Fergus Walsh.


Professor Klaus Dugi, right, with Steve Connor of the Independent and Nick Owen, master of ceremonies for the 2016 Awards

Boehringer Ingelheim is one of the world’s top 15 leading pharmaceutical companies. It was founded in 1885 by Albert Boehringer and is still a family-owned company, employing more than 47,000 people globally.

The company’s long relationship with the MJA began in 1998 when Boehringer Ingelheim sponsored publication of the Association’s history, Independent and Bloody Minded and we are delighted to have the company’s support in this, our 50th anniversary year.

Boehringer Ingelheim focuses on the disease areas of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); heart attack (myocardial infarction); secondary stroke prevention; thromboembolic disease; high blood pressure; HIV/AIDS; Parkinson’s; stroke due to atrial fibrillation (abnormal heart rhythm); diabetes and oncology

The UK operation (Boehringer Ingelheim UK and Ireland) is based in Bracknell, Berks, and is one of this country’s top pharma companies with a turnover of  €504 million in 2013. The business focuses on clinical research, data management, sales and marketing.

Press office: call 01344 424600 or email

Twitter: @boehringerUK

Boehringer Ingelheim has been an ongoing supporter of the MJA Awards and was also our principal sponsor for the 2015 and 2016 awards.

At the 2016 awards, Professor Klaus Dugi, the UK Managing Director and Medical Director of Boehringer Ingelheim presented the award for Broadcast Journalist of the Year to Rowan Deacon from BBC Two for his “powerful” piece How to Die. Thomas Moore of Sky News was highly commended for his report on a clinical trial of treatment to cure paedophiles.

Professor Dugi also presented Steve Connor of the Independent with the trophy for News Story of the Year, for a general audience.

The company was also principal sponsor of our 2015 Summer Awards where they supported two categories: Best Freelance for a General Audience and Digital Innovation.

Best Freelance for a General Audience was won by Patrick Strudwick, a prolific freelancer and LGBT editor of the Huffington Post.

His entry included powerful pieces for the Indepenent on rape as a weapon of mass destruction and the fall-out of a homophobic attack and an article for the Guardian on the potential of a TV soap opera to stem the rise of HIV in young gay men.

Digital Innovation was won by David Swan of Pulse for the Pulse Toolkit.