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 "health care" ...

  • Patient Privacy

    Our investigation found more than 30,000 complaints nationally had been filed under HIPAA -- the health privacy law -- yet not a single hospital or doctor has been fined. The station obtained documents on hundreds of HIPAA investications in Western Pennsylvania and found all the caes were resolved through "voluntary compliance" - no fine or penalty. Moreover, the government office that oversees HIPAA actually violated patient privacy by inadvertently releasing names of some of the people who filed HIPAA complaints.
  • The Evidence Gap

    The nations' medical bill last year exceeded $2.7 trillin -- nearly as much as the projected total cost of the Iraq war. If it were medical money well spend, there might be few cries to "reform" the American health care system. But by some estimates, one-third or more of the medical care received by patients in this country may be virtually worthless. The nation is wasting hundreds of billions of dollars each year on superfluous treatments -- money that otherwise could by spent, for example , on providing health insurance for every child, woman and man int his country who currently have no coverage. A team of science and business reporters from The New York Times set out to explain how and why the United States is spending so much on health care with so relatively little to show for the money, They discovered a gaping chasm between scientific evidence and the practice of medicine. In an in-depth series of articles, told through real doctors and patients, and based on information they dug up that was frequently unflattering to medical providers, companies and regulators, the Times team documented many disturbing instances of "The Evidence Gap."
  • Not What the Doctor Ordered

    The Blade's investigation showed how patients are increasingly being harmed when insurers interfere with doctors' orders. Of the 920 doctors who responded to an online national survey about insurers, more than 99 percent reported that insurers had interfered with their hospitalization, referral, prescription or testing decisions. Interviews with about 100 doctors and their patients illustrated how insurers are becoming more aggressive in shaping patient care, eroding the doctor-patient relationship and putting people in danger.
  • In Their Dust

    The Baltimore Sun discovered that unbeknownst to state regulators and legislators, non-profit hospitals were suing tens of thousands of patients in local courts over unpaid bills even though those bills were covered through the rate-setting system. Some of the hospitals that filed the most lawsuits were also collecting consistent surpluses on unpaid and charity care through the rate-setting formula, something that the rate-setting commission could not explain. Patients were often railroaded through the legal system. And hospitals violated state laws or contracts with insurance companies by suing patients for amounts they were not permitted to collect.
  • Hospital Corruption: "Salaries First, Patients Last"; "Hospital Secrets"

    The series exposed Schneider Regional Medical Center's top executives' self-dealing and lavish pay, perks and the tragic result: The public hospital's cancer center was left so cash-strapped it could not pay for medicine and radiation equipment. The Daily News also revealed that more than $2.4 million in charity donations to the hospital's cancer center is missing, and the hospital cannot produce documentation to explain the numerous large withdrawals from bank accounts and entities that were specifically created to receive those donations. The investigation also found that two top hospital executives had criminal records, which were not disclosed when they were hired.
  • California's Criminal Nurses

    Dozens of registered nurses and other licensed health care professionals convicted of serious crimes - including sex offenses and attempted murder - remained fully licensed to practice for years in California before regulators acted against them. Some registered nurses racked up five, 10, even 14 convictions before the state moved to discipline them.
  • America's Health Care Crisis

    "America's health-care system is in a crisis with many people worried that medical costs will bankrupt them, a Consumer Reports series found...The series found that consumers who had to buy insurance on their own had higher costs and more limited coverage, according to our nationally representative survey. Often they found they could not get coverage at all, unless it excluded the very illness for which they needed treatment."
  • The American Dream: Hanging by a Thread

    "This project is an attempt to measure the health of the middle class by doing original research, then going out into our community to find how the results of the data analysis matched real life in postindustrial Ohio. We found the middle class is shrinking - squeezed on two fronts by steadily decreasing earnings and dramatically increasing costs of the hallmarks of the middle class: home ownership, higher education, affordable health care and a secure retirement."
  • Sick

    "'Sick' tells the story of eight individuals from around the country to examine what happens when people struggle to pay for their medical care. Along the way, it also tells the story of health insurance in America- how it evolved, how it operates today, and what's likely to happen to it in the future."
  • Coronary: A True Story of Medicine Gone Awry

    The book "investigated and documented the roles played by physicians, hospital administrators and corporate executives in a ten-year scheme to defraud Medicare and private insurers of tens of millions of dollars by performing unnecessary invasive tests and heart surgery" on patients.