Akilah Johnson

Washington, D.C.

National reporter focusing on health disparities.

Education: University of Miami, BA in Journalism and English ; University of Miami, MA in Journalism

Akilah Johnson joined The Washington Post in 2021 as a national reporter exploring the effect of racism and social inequality on health. In prior roles at ProPublica and the Boston Globe she covered the intersection of health, race, politics, and immigration. She shared a Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and was Pulitzer finalist as a member of the Globe's Spotlight Team investigation into racism in Boston. Her reporting has won a number of other national awards including NABJ Salute to Excellence Awards, ONA's Knight Award for Public Service, and a National Head
Latest from Akilah Johnson

U.N.: Black maternal health in crisis across hemisphere, not just in U.S.

Black women and girls in the United States were three times more likely than their peers to die while giving birth or in the six weeks afterward.

July 12, 2023

In the death of an Olympian, Black moms hear echoes of their own crises

The death of Tori Bowie, who was eight months pregnant, has been attributed to one of the most common causes of maternal mortality: high blood pressure.

June 19, 2023

Black communities endured wave of excess deaths in past 2 decades, studies find

The price society pays for failing to achieve health equity and allowing Black people to die prematurely was $238 billion in 2018 alone.

May 16, 2023

Birth control pills aren’t available over the counter in U.S. That could change.

For the first time, the Food and Drug Administration is weighing whether to allow a daily contraceptive to be sold over the counter.

May 4, 2023

U.S. maternal mortality climbs dramatically during pandemic, study finds

It marked the third consecutive year the nation’s maternal mortality rate, long the highest among high-income nations, increased.

March 16, 2023

Can family medicine improve America’s mental health?

When patients walk into a doctor’s office, they bring all their needs — including concerns about mental health.

February 10, 2023

Can politics kill you? Research says the answer increasingly is yes.

The toxicity of partisan politics is fueling an overall increase in mortality rates for working-age Americans, new studies show.

December 16, 2022

In rural America, the crisis of disappearing reproductive care steals lives

Clinicians and public health experts worry the pandemic, staffing shortages and increased abortion restrictions will further erode reproductive care access.

November 18, 2022

Communities of color record big gains in health insurance coverage

From 2020 to 2022, Hispanic people saw a 53 percent jump in enrollment through the Affordable Care Act insurance marketplace and Black people 49 percent.

October 27, 2022

The Black-White covid death rate flipped. Why?

Today on “Post Reports,” why White people in the U.S. are now more likely to die of covid than Black Americans.

October 20, 2022