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 test" ...

  • Kaiser Health News: Liquid Gold

    Doctors across the U.S. are becoming millionaires by setting up private, on-site labs and testing urine samples for legal and illegal drugs. The simple tests are costing the U.S. government and American insurers $8.5 billion a year -- more than the entire budget of the Environmental Protection Agency, a groundbreaking investigation by Kaiser Health News showed. Doctors are testing patients - even the elderly - for opioids as well as street drugs like PCP or cocaine that almost never turn up positive. And the payoff is stunning: Testing a tiny cup of urine can bring in thousands of dollars – up to $17,000 in some cases. Yet there are no national standards for who gets tested, for what, or how often.
  • FOX 5 Atlanta $2 Tests: Bad Arrests

    "Test kits don't lie." That's what we heard on dash cam video as another cop led another innocent Georgian to jail based on the false positive results of a drug field test. In fact, some test kits do lie, and sometimes with terrible consequences. Our investigation provided a first-time look at the big picture and continues to change the way law enforcement trusts these tests.
  • Protecting the Shield

    “Protecting the Shield” exposed the deaths and injuries caused by out-of-control rogue cops who are knowingly left on the streets by their superiors. This exhaustive indictment of government failings shows how weak police oversight cost citizens their lives, honest officers their careers and taxpayers tens of millions of dollars. Our work prompted police reforms, including random drug testing of all police officers and a statewide internal affairs overhaul.
  • Drug Test Shakedown

    A FOX31 Denver undercover investigation exposed an extortion scheme happening inside a prominent pre-employment drug screening center. Undercover cameras caught a facility manager accepting cash bribes from clients in exchange for guaranteed adulteration of urine tests.
  • Bad Chemistry: Annie Dookhan And The Massachusetts Drug Lab Crisis

    In August 2012, a drug testing laboratory in Boston was closed by the state of Massachusetts. Initial reports simply stated the shutdown was because a chemist working in the lab ‘failed to follow testing protocols.’ In the months that followed, state officials alleged that the chemist — Annie Dookhan — had not just mishandled criminal evidence but had falsified drug results by deliberately tainting and mixing evidence in tens of thousands of criminal cases. As of this writing, the state has provided what it says is a ‘master list’ of affected cases, and puts that number at roughly 43,000. However, recent court filings question the accuracy of that number. WBUR didn’t want to just follow the latest twists and turns of this story, we wanted to understand how one chemist could cause such a chain reaction that stretched to all corners of the criminal justice system. We wanted to pursue an iterative investigative journalism approach - to show our work mid-process, use data-driven analysis and be transparent about what we didn't know. To date, WBUR is the only news organization to have published an analysis of the testing data.
  • 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.
  • Trial and Error

    “Trial and Error” is a year-long investigation into the way pharmaceutical drugs are tested and approved for sale in the United States. Our report examined the strength of the safety net that is supposed to ensure that the billion-dollar blockbuster drug of today won’t be the dangerous drug of tomorrow.
  • Detroit Free Press: Free to Kill

    “Free to Kill,” a seven-month Detroit Free Press investigation, found the Michigan Department of Corrections failed to properly supervise some of the most violent of the state’s roughly 70,000 offenders under its watch. A total of 88 parolees and probationers were suspected, arrested or convicted in 95 murders between Jan. 1, 2010, and Aug. 31, 2011. The number nearly doubled from 2010 to 2011 -- from 21 to 38. The series also revealed that dozens of offenders weren't outfitted with court-ordered electronic tethers, and others weren't sent back to prison for new crimes or failed drug tests.
  • Chantix: Miracle cure for dangerous drug?

    An investigation into the anti-smoking drug Chantix/Varenicline found many adverse reactions in the FDA's public database. The reactions included aggression, violent behavior and thoughts of suicide. "A follow report detailed how drugs are sent to market with minimal testing."
  • Leaks in the System

    KMSP-TV found that oversight for drug testing of commercial truckers was lax. This allowed truckers to adulterate or substitute specimens in order to pass a test. Also they found that despite drug test being required, companies in Minnesota and Wisconsin continue to put drivers behind the wheel without testing them first. Lastly, they exposed a loophole that allowed failed drivers to keep working in the industry.