Catherine Arnst, who joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2013, is an award-winning writer and editor, specializing in medicine, science, and health care policy. A senior medical writer for Reuters and BusinessWeek, she has extensive experience writing and editing for magazines, newspapers, and wire services. Drawn to RWJF’s commitment to health and health care, Arnst sees her role as one of “amplifying the Foundation’s voice and enlightening the public about health care programs that touch every person’s life.” She views the start of the Affordable Care Act as an ideal time to elevate the Foundation’s profile and reach even more Americans with vital stories about how health care is delivered, how it is paid for, and how well it serves individuals and families.
Previously, Arnst was vice president and director of health care content development for Edelman Public Relations. In this role, her clients included pharmaceutical and biotech companies, hospitals and non-profits. For more than 15 years she was the senior medical writer for BusinessWeek, covering medicine, science, and health care policy for both the magazine and website. She followed a broad range of subjects, including the search for effective cancer treatments, research into the brain, new medicines for pain, emerging biotechnology treatments, and challenges facing the U.S. health care system. She was a creator and co-writer of the BusinessWeek blogs “Money and Politics” and “Working Parents.” Earlier, Arnst served as a technology writer for BusinessWeek, where she produced feature stories and special reports on breaking topics such as the rise of the cellular industry, the decline of AT&T, and issues related to IBM.
Prior to BusinessWeek, Arnst served as Reuters’ European Science Correspondent based in London, where she oversaw all medical, science, technology, and environmental coverage in Europe and wrote a weekly column on science and technology. As a freelance journalist, Arnst has written articles and white papers on a host of health and medical care issues for the Boston Globe, US News & World Report, Kaiser Health News, and The Daily Beast.
In 2004, the World Leadership Forum in London honored Arnst with its Business Journalist of the Year and Best Medical Story of the Year awards for her cover story “I Can’t Remember.” She also received the Advancing Cancer Enlightenment journalism award from the European College of Oncology for her five-year body of work on cancer. The Newswomen’s Club of New York awarded her its Front Page Award in 2000 and 2001 for her cover stories “Biotech Bodies” and “Birth of a Cancer Drug.”
Arnst holds a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. She has also held The New York Times/Columbia University Neuroscience Fellowship, the Harvard Medical School Case Fellowship on Immunology, the Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Massachusetts Health Care Journalist Fellowship, and the International Longevity Center Fellowship.
Raised in Portville, N.Y., she presently resides in Brooklyn, N.Y. with her teenage daughter. In her non-writing time she enjoys skiing, bicycling, theater, and cooking.