Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "drug companies" ...

  • Politics of Pain

    “Politics of Pain,” a multi-part investigation by the Center for Public Integrity and The Associated Press, examines the politics behind the nation’s opioid addiction epidemic, with a unique look at how drugmakers and their allies sought to block and delay legislation and thwart other steps intended to combat opioid abuse while pushing their own profitable but unproven remedies. Drug companies and allied advocates spent more than $880 million on lobbying and political contributions at the state and federal level over the past decade, more than eight times what the formidable gun lobby recorded for political activities during the same period. Using a network of paid allies, drugmakers also created an echo chamber that quietly derailed efforts to curb U.S. consumption of the drugs while pushing new, harder-to-abuse formulations of their products that have not been proven to reduce overdose rates.
  • Haves and Have-Nots: Uganda's drug-trial business is booming - but is it fair?

    Drug trials in developing nations around the world are growing exponentially. They are cheap. Rules are more lax. Uganda is one of the leading places in the world where this trend is taking place. In one of the world’s AIDS epicenters, in Gulu, northern Uganda, children are given a choice: be part of a drug trial involving risky treatment and at least get regular medications. Or rely on public health programs that often mean regularly missing required dosages of life-saving pharmaceuticals. The result is emblematic of a system where the ethics of drug trials face a grim reality. “The problem is that inadequate medical care creates a strong impetus for parents to agree to have their kids in research,” said Elizabeth Woeckner, president of Citizens for Responsible Care and Research, an organization that works to protect people who are the subjects of scientific research. “What should be voluntary is not quite so.” In the last five years, drug trials in Uganda have nearly doubled. There have been more than 100 trials in the last five years there. Drug companies such as Bristol Myers Squibb, Pfizer and Novartis, as well as American agencies, including the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute, work in places like Uganda because of the low cost and the number of patients who will sign up quickly for tests. At the same time, public funding for global health is diminishing. Despite safeguards, since the late 1990s a number of well-publicized cases have highlighted tests that appeared to violate ethical standards and regulations. While signing up for a trial is voluntary, that doesn’t make the decision easier – especially for parents who must decide what is best for their children, and knowing that the alternative means. This in-depth investigation goes beyond the surface to show the tough choices that arise from even the best intentioned drug trials, the vast sums of money at stake, and the seismic shift that has happened in the past decade for how the world tests drugs on humans.
  • C-HIT: Pharma Perks

    The Affordable Care Act requires pharmaceutical companies to publicly report all payments to physicians by September 2013. Some drug companies have already compiled, but few consumers know that the information is available or how to access it. What this story did is disclose for the first time for CT consumers: 1) how many doctors in Connecticut are high-prescribers of certain psychotropic and pain medications, (108) 2) the cost of written prescriptions (hundreds of thousands of dollars in some cases) 3) how many of these doctors received payments from drug companies (at least 43) 4) and the amounts that the doctors received from the drug companies ($30,000 - $99,000) It also reported that only 3 doctors on the high-prescribing drug list have been disciplined by the state Medical Examining Board.
  • Side Effects

    The author examines the conflicts of interest within the medical community and the influence of pharmaceutical companies on doctors and researchers. The series shows the dangerous consequences that come when drug companies pay doctors and researchers to endorse their products. An inquiry by a U.S. Senate committee, as well as policy reform at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health were results of this investigation.
  • "Big Pharma's Crime Spree"

    David Evans investigates the criminal activity of some of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. Drug companies are fined billions of dollars for illegally marketing their products, yet continue to do it. Evans asks why.
  • Combating Autism From Within

    This series shows both sides of the vaccine debate concerning mercury's possible role in causing autism. Also, the stories touch on conflicts of interest with drug companies paying and conducting studies with government support, which may prevent users from knowing the truth.
  • The Killer Cure

    Thousands of patients have died as a result of the Food and Drug Administration, along with drug companies, have failed to warn Americans about the dangers of methadone. People are overdosing on methadone, and federal officials hired a doctor on the payroll of a methdaone maker to report on the number of deaths each year.
  • Prescription for Trouble: Common drugs, hidden dangers. Tens of millions of people at risk.

    This article investigated twelve common types of prescription drugs that are linked to serious risks, including heart attacks, cancer, strokes and suicide. The risks were undetected or underestimated when the drugs were initially approved for use. Many of the drugs are still not properly disclosing the risks in advertisements. The article uncovers widespread problems in the drug safety system and proposes needed reform.
  • Suddenly Sick

    In this series, The Seattle Times revealed their findings from an investigation into the medical world. Among other things, they found that: "Pharmaceutical firms have commandeered the process by which diseases are defined." They reported that the World Health Organization and the U.S. Institutes of Health, among others, receive money from drug companies to promote the agendas of those companies. They also found that "some diseases have been radically redefined without a strong basis in medical evidence."
  • Pregnancy Warning

    This investigation looked into problems associated with Cytotec, a stomach ulcer drug that is sometimes used during labor and delivery. But, the drug is not approved for use on pregnant women, and its use sometimes leads to birth defects.