Enter the 2021 MJA Awards

Bristol Myers Squibb – Principal Sponsor of the MJA Awards 2021

The 2021 MJA Awards are now closed to entry.  This page is for information only.


There are £750 cash prizes and a trophy to be won in 15 categories, plus a £1,000 prize for the Outstanding Contribution Award, which is decided by our judging panel, for the best of the best.

The deadline for entries was midnight on Monday March 15, 2021.

Key Information on Successful Submission of Entries: When you submit your entry, you will be taken to a confirmation and payment page – if you are returned to this page scroll down as you will have missed out a required field in your entry.  The only guarantee that your entry has been successfully submitted is the confirmation email that you will receive, containing a copy of your entry.  If after checking spam you can not find a confirmation email please get in touch

Scroll down for the online entry form but ensure you have read the guidance provided here first before completing the form.

Winners will be announced at the Awards’ ceremony which has been postponed from June 23 to September 22 at the Barber-Surgeons’ Hall in the City of London. Winners from 2020 will also be invited to receive their trophies as no live event could be held in 2020.  Our host for the night is Nicholas Owen. We would like to thank Bristol Myers Squibb, our principal awards sponsor for a second year, and individual awards sponsors Christine Webber, Edelman, and Roche.

To discuss sponsorship opportunities, please email us at


Award Categories 2021

Charity Writer or Broadcaster of the Year (You may also be eligible for associate membership of the MJA)
Podcast of the Year
Newcomer of the Year (36 or fewer months in journalism).
Mental Health Story of the Year  Supported by Edelman
The Dr David Delvin Award for sex and sexual health journalism  Supported by Christine Webber
Feature of the Year (specialist audience)
Feature of the Year (broadcast)
Feature of the Year (general audience).
News Story of the Year (specialist audience)
News Story of the Year (broadcast)
News Story of the Year (general audience)  Supported by Roche
Case Study of the Year. Supported by Medtronic
Science Explained
Freelance of the Year
Editor of the Year
Outstanding Contribution to Health or Medical Journalism – this award is not by self entry but chosen by the judges from entries across all categories. Supported by Bristol Myers Squibb, Principal Sponsor of the 2021 MJA Awards. 

Each award attracts a cash prize of £750, a trophy, and an invitation to receive your award at the MJA Awards ceremony which has now been postponed from Wednesday 23 June to Wednesday 22 September in London.   For the prestigious award of outstanding contribution to health or medical journalism the cash prize is £1000.

We value our sponsors support but in keeping with the MJA motto — Independent and bloody minded — sponsors are not involved in the judging process in any way.

Category Guidance

Case Study – These add human interest to complex medical stories making them more relevant to readers, listeners, and viewers or be used to explore or raise awareness of a condition or health problem. You may submit anonymous but not composite case studies (NB: composite means an article that does not distinguish between the individual, anonymous cases being referenced). (One piece of work may be submitted – any format).

Charity Writer or Broadcaster – This is awarded for the best written, visual or audio communications for a charity publication and/or website. Content should engage with the charity’s audience (members, donors). This could be a case study, an interview with a patient representative or charity official, or an explanation of the latest treatment or emerging science. (One piece of work may be submitted – any format).

The Dr David Delvin Award for sex and sexual health journalism – this award is being made in memory of Dr David Delvin, and has been made possible through the support of his widow Christine Webber. The award is for an article, TV or radio programme that gives good information about sex and sexual health for the general reader/viewer. The work should be accessible, accurate and well written to provide clear information and advice, as David strongly believed that if a person’s sex life is going well, their chance of being a happy, well-balanced and contented individual is much greater. (One piece of work may be submitted – any format).

Editor of the Year – The category is for editors not only of publications, but of health pages/sections, websites, or sections of larger websites. Please supply evidence of both your personal impact and your title’s, and the achievements of which you are proudest. (Three pieces of work may be submitted – any format).

Feature and News (general) – these are features or news story for a general, consumer audience. Mention if your story was exclusive or followed up elsewhere. (One piece of work may be submitted – written word only)

Feature and News (specialist) – these are features or news story for a specialist audience, usually appearing in a publication dedicated to health, medicine or science. Mention if your story was exclusive or followed up elsewhere. (One piece of work may be submitted – written word only)

News (broadcast) – a short news package that has been broadcast on TV, radio or online. This needs to be original material that has been edited together, ideally no more than five minutes in length. The judges will also be considering how the package has been constructed, looking at the choice of pictures and sound effects as well as interviews. (One piece of work may be submitted – broadcast only)

Features (broadcast) – a longer piece in a more in depth or documentary style (either in a news/magazine programme or a stand-alone piece) that has been broadcast on TV, radio or online. The pictures, sound effects, interviews, editing, research and resources available/budget will be considered. Judges will also consider the time available to tell the story and amount of information and content conveyed within this time frame. It needs to be original material that has been edited together. (One piece of work may be submitted – broadcast only)

Freelance of the Year – judges will be asked to consider the range of work submitted, ability to adapt to different genres and to look for imaginative and engaging story-telling. (Three pieces of work may be submitted – any format)

Mental Health – News, features, or broadcast package may be entered about this area of medicine often neglected by the media. It could be tied to a campaign, about emerging science, a case study, or an interview with a leading figure in mental health. (One piece of work may be submitted – any format)

Newcomer –Entrants will have been working in health and medical journalism for under 36 months (not before 13 February 2018). Judges will look for evidence of impact and engagement, topicality and balance. (One piece of work may be submitted – any format).

Podcast – for a programme created and distributed as a podcast. Three examples of work may be submitted for judging.  All three audio submissions must have been available to download via RSS, or free to access and subscribable on an audio app or website and should have been first ‘published’ during the entry period. (Three examples of work may be submitted – audio format)

Science Explained – Judges will look for complex or emerging science stories made clear for a lay or specialist audience. Matching explanation to audience is vital. (One piece of work may be submitted – any format).

Rules and Entry Guidance

Work submitted will need to have been first published or broadcast on or between Thursday February 13, 2020 and Friday February 12, 2021.

All work entered should be health- or medicine-related.

You can only enter once in each category.

You can enter more than one category (NB: entry fee is payable by non-members for each category entered – see below).

You cannot enter the same work within different categories. (Exceptions to this rule apply to the Editor and Freelance categories.  Work submitted in these categories may also be entered in another category).

If your entry is for a team rather than for an individual, then please ensure you acknowledge the team (maximum four individuals) within the entry form ‘supportive information’ section, outlining their role in the entry clearly.  The entrant named on the form will be considered the lead entrant and receive the prize fund which of course you may share with your team. (NB: Team entries are not allowed in the Editor, Freelance, Newcomer, Charity Writer or Broadcaster categories as these are intended to recognise individual achievements)

Important information on acceptable file formats for your entry

All entries need to be made digitally by URL or by file submission. URLs must be available until the end of June 2021.  If the URL is password protected the password details must be included on the entry form in the supporting information.  Please note judges will not subscribe to view URL’s even if trial/free subscriptions are available – in this case provide a file submission. If you enter by file the entry form will only allow upload of files in PDF/MP3 format and with a maximum size of 8MB.

For those who need to enter files larger than 8MB or of a different format contact to organise large file transfer of your entry.

DO NOT include links to large file transfer in the form you MUST contact to transfer the file.

Files uploaded to the form should be labelled/renamed with your initial, name and category eg: JBloggsBlogger.  

NB: Free online tools are available to make PDFs from URLs and to join PDF pages of longer submissions for the required one file submission allowed on the entry form.

Cost of entry

Entries are open to all but an entry fee of £40 per entry is payable by non-members.

Why not join the MJA for the same cost as entering one category – £40 – to enjoy all the benefits of membership and enter as many categories as you like for free? (Usual price of membership is £50).   Also membership fees are tax deductible but your entry fee is not.  Just use the code ‘Awards21’ in the discount box on your application form.

When completing the entry form you will be asked to indicate if you are an existing member, wish to join or wish to pay the entry fee.   If you wish to join you can either apply now or after submission of your entry (don’t forget to quote ‘Awards21’ in the discount box. If you wish to pay the entry fee you will be requested to do this via paypal after submission of your entry.   You do not need a paypal account and can pay by credit or debit card.   Your entry will not be accepted until the fee is received.

Members of the MJA may support one entry in the awards enabling a non member to enter for free.   This is so that MJA members can identify great journalism and suggest that an individual enter with their support.   You will need to name the MJA member supporting your entry on your entry form.   Please note that discounted membership associated with entry to the Awards is only available once and in subsequent years you will be expected to retain your membership at the same rate as all other renewing members (£50 annually).

The finalists in all categories (apart from Outstanding Achievement) will be announced at the end of May/start of June and you will be notified if you are a finalist.   For Outstanding Achievement there is only a winner who will be announced along with all other winners at the Awards Ceremony.

The Awards will be announced and presented on Wednesday September 22, 2021 at the Barber-Surgeons Hall, London (postponed from Wednesday June 23).  Winners from 2020 will also be invited to receive their trophies as no live event was possible in 2020.

For all queries regarding the Awards contact

Entries closed midnight Monday March 15, 2021