In an unusual alliance, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and NBC News have teamed up to produce a two-hour, commercial-free special on the key issues in the national healthcare reform debate.
The Princeton, N.J.-based foundation will buy two hours of TV time for $2.5 million and turn it over to NBC News, which will produce the program. The foundation also will spend another $1 million to advertise and promote the special.
NBC News will pay for production costs and maintain editorial control of the program's content, according to a joint release. The program's format hasn't been decided, but it will include reports from NBC News correspondents and discussion of the issues by medical experts, lawmakers and citizens.
The foundation said it's buying the air time to explore the strengths and weaknesses of the nation's healthcare system and help dispel growing confusion surrounding the reform debate.
Anchored by Tom Brokaw, the program will feature contributions by correspondents Maria Shriver and Brian Williams. It will air on Tuesday, June 21, from 9 to 11 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.