Scott Hensley Scott Hensley edits stories about health, biomedical research and pharmaceuticals for NPR's Science desk.
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Scott Hensley

Heather Won Tesoriero/NPR
Scott Hensley headshot
Heather Won Tesoriero/NPR

Scott Hensley

Senior Health Editor, Science Desk

Scott Hensley edits stories about health, biomedical research and pharmaceuticals for NPR's Science desk. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he has led the desk's reporting on the development of vaccines against the coronavirus.

Hensley has worked on award-winning investigations in collaboration with journalistic partners.

He was the lead NPR editor on an investigation with the Center for Public Integrity in 2018 that exposed drug industry influence on the choices of preferred medicines by Medicaid programs. The work won the 2019 Gerald Loeb Award for audio reporting.

In 2017, Hensley was the lead NPR editor on an investigation with Kaiser Health News that showed how the pharmaceutical industry exploits government incentives intended to encourage the development of treatments for rare diseases. The stories won the 2019 digital award from the National Institute for Health Care Management.

Hensley has been editing in his current role since 2019. He joined NPR in 2009 to launch Shots, a blog that expanded to become a digital destination for NPR health coverage.

Before NPR, Hensley was a reporter and editor at The Wall Street Journal. He was the founding editor of The Wall Street Journal Health Blog, which focused on the intersection of health and business. As a reporter, he covered the drug industry and the Human Genome Project.

Hensley served on the board of the Association of Health Care Journalists from 2012 to 2020.

He has a bachelor's degree in natural sciences from Johns Hopkins University and a master's in journalism from Columbia University.

Before becoming a journalist, Hensley worked in the medical device industry. He remains, now and forever, a lover of Dobermans, lacrosse and Callinectes sapidus.

Story Archive

A nurse practitioner fills a syringe with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the Beaumont Health offices in Southfield, Mich., on Nov. 5. Jeff Kowalsky/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Jeff Kowalsky/AFP via Getty Images

Doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine are stacked in boxes at the McKesson facility in Shepherdsville, Ky., on March 1. Pool/Getty Images hide caption

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Pool/Getty Images

A COVID-19 pop-up testing site stands on a Manhattan street in October in New York City. On Tuesday, Pfizer released promising data about a pill to treat COVID-19. Spencer Platt/Getty Images hide caption

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images

A COVID-19 antiviral pill called molnupiravir from Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics is being considered by the Food and Drug Administration for emergency use in the coronavirus pandemic. Merck & Co Inc./Handout via Reuters hide caption

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Merck & Co Inc./Handout via Reuters

Safeway pharmacist Shahrzad Khoobyari administers a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot into the arm of Norman Solomon in San Rafael, Calif., in October. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A nurse draw a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine dose from a vial at the Cameron Grove Community Center in Bowie, Md., in late March. Moderna says study data supports use of a half-dose of the vaccine in children 6 to 11. Win McNamee/Getty Images hide caption

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Win McNamee/Getty Images

Pharmacist LaChandra McGowan prepares a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic operated by DePaul Community Health in New Orleans in August. Soon, children ages 5 to 11 could be eligible for Pfizer shots. Mario Tama/Getty Images hide caption

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Mario Tama/Getty Images

A health care worker prepares a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine during a clinic held at the Watts Juneteenth Street Fair in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles. Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

Nurse Christina Garibay administers Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine to a man at a community outreach event in Los Angeles in August. Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

Janet Gerber, a health department worker in Louisville, Ky., processes boxes containing vials of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine in March. Jon Cherry/Getty Images hide caption

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Jon Cherry/Getty Images