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Bridge Michigan
Michigan’s nonpartisan, nonprofit news source

About Michigan Health Watch

Michigan Health Watch…

  • Is the latest Michigan coverage expansion from Bridge Magazine, Michigan’s leading nonpartisan, nonprofit data- and fact-driven news provider.

  • Aspires to provide readers with the state’s best journalism at the intersections of public policy, health demographics and trends, health care (from treatment to insurance coverage), and innovations in Michigan’s medical research industry.

  • Is published twice each month and supplemented with an additional Mental Health special report once each month. Health Watch is available online at, via email to all subscribers of Bridge’s free email edition, and on Facebook (@BridgeMichigan).

  • Always welcomes story tips and ideas and reader questions. Michigan Health Watch staff contact information is below.


Michigan Health Watch is made possible by generous financial support from the Michigan Health Endowment Fund, the Michigan Association of Health Plans, the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, and the Michigan Health Information Network. The monthly mental health special report is made possible by generous financial support of the Ethel & James Flinn Foundation.

Michigan Health Watch journalists may seek and weigh interviews and data from these underwriters among many other potential health, mental health, and health care stakeholders and experts.

However, Michigan Health Watch underwriters are invested in the civic value of independent, in-depth journalism and do not seek, nor will receive, intentionally favorable or biased coverage. As with all other Bridge journalism, Michigan Health Watch adheres to the professional standards of the Institute for Nonprofit News (of which Bridge is Michigan’s largest member publication). Specifically,…

Bridge retains full authority over editorial content to protect the journalistic independence, credibility, and integrity of the publication. We maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions. Bridge accepts gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals and organizations for the general support of our activities, but Bridge news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support. Our organization may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content.


Robin Erb

Robin Erb, who leads health coverage for Michigan Health Watch, believes it is our personal stories that keep us connected on common ground, whatever the break-neck fragmentation of a digital world. A long-time journalist, Robin previously spent six years at the Detroit Free Press chronicling the fight against - and sometimes the triumph over - our most horrific diseases. Her award-winning stories chronicled the battle over the Affordable Care Act, state expansion of Medicaid, cutting-edge research led by Michigan’s hospitals and universities, deadly mistakes and extraordinary care in Michigan’s nursing homes, and a nearly forgotten mix-up of chemicals in cattle feed in the 1970s and its lingering effects today. She holds bachelor’s degrees in communications and political science from Miami University and a master’s in organizational leadership from Lourdes University (Toledo, Oh). You can contact Robin at or 734-725-1155.

Ted Roelofs

Ted Roelofs of Kentwood, has been a general assignment reporter at Bridge since 2012 and has written extensively on healthcare in that time as well as prison and juvenile justice reform. Roelofs spent nearly three decades at the Grand Rapids Press where he covered politics, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, rural poverty and mental illness among the homeless. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Reach Ted at

EDITORS: Michigan Health Watch is jointly edited by Bridge editor David Zeman and Managing Editor Joel Kurth.

David worked for two decades at the Detroit Free Press as an investigative reporter and editor. As editor, his reporters won some of the nation’s highest honors, including the Pulitzer Prize, the George Polk Award, the Worth Bingham Prize and the National Headliner Public Service Award. Before returning to his hometown of Detroit, Zeman was a reporter at The Miami Herald and the (Raleigh, N.C.) News and Observer. He also spent two years as an attorney at a commercial litigation law firm in Miami. Zeman holds a law degree from the University of Miami, a master’s in journalism from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Reach David at or 248-210-8476.

Joel has spent more than two decades in journalism in Michigan. He worked 17 years as an editor and reporter at The Detroit News, the last five of which he served as editor of investigations and projects. He’s overseen projects that prompted a reassessment of property taxes in Detroit, changed laws about tax foreclosure sales, prompted reforms at the Detroit Medical Center and led numerous investigations into municipal corruption. Kurth also worked at The Saginaw News and in the Upper Peninsula and has won more than 30 national and state journalism awards, including being co-winner of The Michigan Press Association’s “Journalist of the Year” award in 2016. Reach Joel at or 586-306-4708.