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 [email protected] where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "physicians" ...

  • Medical Secrets

    The Toronto Star reveals that the physicians' "self-regulatory bodies are lax at best and deceptive at worst, consistently hiding incompetence and mistakes from public view. As a result, you have little chance of knowing if your physician has ever been disciplined by a hospital, investigated for negligence or sued for malpractice more often than his or her peers."
  • Patients don't get full story on doctors

    San Francisco Chronicle reports on the lack of information about malpractice verdicts on the website of the Medical Board of California. The story reveals that the public database omits records on doctors' misdemeanors, remedial actions (like drug and alcohol treatment programs), malpractice settlements, various lawsuits, complaints, detailed information on formal discipline, etc. Consumers are required to write the Medical Board for detailed information, and often wait for weeks to get a response. Wallack points to three high-dollar verdicts against negligent doctors, which were not included in the state board's database.
  • The trouble with trocars

    A Smart Money investigation examines the risks to patients operated with trocar, "a razor-sharp instrument used in millions of laparoscopic surgeries each year, including hysteroctomies and gall bladder operations." The device is described as a metal spike the doctor forces into the abdomen into the beginning of the surgery, stabbing blindly for a few moments, before a camera can be inserted. The story reveals that many doctors are "alarmed at the numbers of serious injuries and deaths they say are linked to this device." The reporter points to statistics, showing more than 40,000 trocar-related injuries in the last ten years, and reveals an FDA admittance that many injuries go underreported. The force for change now comes from malpractice insurers tired of paying out claims, the magazine finds.
  • Doctor Feelbad

    New York Magazine looks at the lowering of doctors' income in recent years. The story reveals that, mainly because of the managed-care scheme, physicians can no more charge as much as they want. The article points out that increasing paperwork, emphasize on teamwork, more informed patients and meager co-pays are additional factors contributing to the erosion of doctors' independence and power. "There has been a vast, largely unnoticed change in the organization of the medical labor force .... from now on, doctors will be employees like everyone else," reports the magazine.
  • A Critical Condition

    Delaware Today examines the growing problem with long emergency-visits waits in the state. The story finds that critical-care cases have increased, but "hospitals are unable to keep up with demands for space, staff and services due to decreases in federal funding." The article looks at the emergency rooms in Nanticoke Memorial Hospital, St. Francis hospital, Beebe hospital, and Christiana Care, and finds that all of them need to be expanded.
  • Doctors on the Run Can 'Dine 'n' Dash' In Style in New Orleans

    The Wall Street Journal investigates how the drug companies' marketing events for doctors can impact the physicians' objectivity. The story reveals that in 2000 pharmaceutical firms have spent on this type of direct marketing $4.04 billion, while drug advertising to consumers was estimated at $2.5 billion. The reporter describes how at Christmas time in New Orleans drug makers have gained access to the doctors by inviting them to opulent dinners and letting them win free Christmas trees.
  • How Hospitals are Gambling with your life

    A six-month investigation by Reader's Digest reveals that people with little or no medical training are performing medical proceedures at hospitals, doctors' offices and outpatient clinics throughout the nation. Some of these people, who perform the duties of physicians or nurses, do not have high school degrees, let alone a college diploma.
  • AIDS Incorporated

    A Washington Monthly investigation reveals that "federal AIDS money ended up funding psychic hotlines, Neiman Marcus, and flirting classes." The story reminds about the "San Juan AIDS scandal" involving funding abuses in the beginning of the 1990s, and finds it "symptomatic of larger problems with federal AIDS funding." The report shows that the incidents of "fraud, mismanagement and abuse of AIDS money are increasing nationwide," and points to examples of scandals in Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Indiana and the Los Angeles County. Amongst the key findings is that "the administrators of some AIDS charities earn more than mayors, governors and members of Congress." The investigation looks at "funding inequities [that] particularly impact African-American and other minority communities."
  • HMO Doctors

    Primetime investigates the health care benefits for ABC News employees. Primetime discovers that "dozens of the physicians we as ABC employees were asked to chose from had been disciplined for medical misconduct or fraud."
  • The geography of surgery

    This U.S.A. Today package examines "how rates of common surgeries varied across more than 306 hospitals regions in the United States." It reveals that "... where you live can determine the surgery you get." The reporter details specific cases, in which patients have not always informed of different surgical options. The investigation shows that "physicians often exhibit a blind loyalty to favored procedure that goes beyond scientific evidence..." The package includes a list of the top surgery regions in the country, as well as graphics illustrating the regional rates of different types of operations throughout the country.