In covering insurance, Koff added, it helps to think of your own experience. Most reporters have had experience navigating deductibles, coinsurance, and out-of-pocket costs. As the healthcare narrative shifts from a political horserace to an old-fashioned consumer story, putting yourself in the shoes of someone buying these new insurance products—and asking, what would you want to know?—will produce much better journalism.

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Trudy Lieberman is a fellow at the Center for Advancing Health and a longtime contributing editor to the Columbia Journalism Review. She is the lead writer for The Second Opinion, CJR’s healthcare desk, which is part of our United States Project on the coverage of politics and policy. Follow her on Twitter @Trudy_Lieberman.