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Charles Ornstein is a senior reporter for ProPublica covering health care and the pharmaceutical industry.
In collaboration with Tracy Weber, Ornstein was a lead reporter on a series of articles in the Los Angeles Times titled "The Troubles at King/Drew" hospital that won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award and the Sigma Delta Chi Award for public service in 2005. His ProPublica series, with Tracy Weber, "When Caregivers Harm: California's Unwatched Nurses" was a finalist for a 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.
Ornstein reported for the Times starting in 2001, in the last five years largely in partnership with Weber. Earlier, Ornstein spent five years as a reporter for the Dallas Morning News. He is a past president of the Association of Health Care Journalists and a former Kaiser Family Foundation media fellow.
Aug. 8, 6:15 p.m.Outcry has been building over the rising cost of brand-name medications, but the price of generic drugs has been moving in the opposite direction. The stock prices of generic manufacturers have tumbled, but many consumers aren’t paying less at the pharmacy counter.
Aug. 6, 6 p.m.Faced with competition, some pharmaceutical companies are cutting deals with insurance companies to favor their brand-name products over cheaper generics. Insurers pay less, but sometimes consumers pay more. Adderall XR, a drug to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a case in point.
Aug. 3, 11:31 a.m.Reversing course, federal health officials withdrew a proposal that would have required private accrediting organizations to publicly release reports of problems they found in health care facilities. Accreditors and hospitals had panned the idea; consumer advocates and business groups supported it.
July 27, 8 a.m.For years, Vietnam vets and their widows have been pushing the VA to extend benefits to those exposed to the toxic herbicide and later stricken with glioblastoma. The VA has said no, but advocates hope the agency will now revisit the issue.
July 13, 9:30 a.m.Some Medicare beneficiaries are being prescribed opioids by 10 or more doctors, or are filling prescriptions for more than 1,000 pills a month. Hundreds of doctors appear to be prescribing indiscriminately, says the inspector general of Health and Human Services.
July 10, 11 a.m.Pharmaceutical companies are increasingly agreeing to refund money if patients don't respond to medications as expected. The Trump administration is intrigued, but critics say the deals are unlikely to reduce consumers' bills.
July 6, 1 p.m.As Republicans in Congress work to roll back the Affordable Care Act, they and some states are proposing major changes to the Medicaid program. Researchers say these changes would cost millions their health coverage.
June 29, 1:08 p.m.The government had planned to share data with researchers on patients enrolled in Medicare Advantage health plans. Then, suddenly, it didn’t.
June 23, 8 a.m.Federal and state officials have increased their focus on the problem, but ProPublica found 18 incidents in the last year in which employees at nursing homes and assisted living facilities posted unauthorized photos and videos of residents on social media platforms.
June 23, 7:59 a.m.Here are details of 65 incidents since 2012 in which workers at nursing homes and assisted-living centers shared photos or videos of residents on social media networks. The details come from government inspection reports, court cases and media reports.
June 12, 8 a.m.At a meeting in March, a lead analyst in the VA’s compensation service was critical of the media, scientists and the VA’s own administrative tribunal for taking positions that differ from his. The VA said his comments “did not fully or accurately reflect VA's position” but also said his quotes were
June 7, 12:59 p.m.As elected officials increasingly turn to social media to communicate with constituents, some are blocking those who disagree with them. Some say it violates the First Amendment. Legislators say it’s about promoting a “healthy, civil dialogue.” Expect court battles ahead.
May 31, 5:59 p.m.Amid public concern over spiking drug prices, a powerful middleman is suing a tiny drugmaker over unpaid rebates and fees. The maker calls the suit baseless; analysts say the suit offers a window into an opaque world.
May 25, 11 a.m.Since the passage of the American Health Care Act, Republican members of Congress have tried to swing public opinion to their side. ProPublica has been tracking what they’re saying.
May 2, 11 a.m.A new study shows that doctors prescribed fewer marketed brand-name drugs when teaching hospitals restricted access to pharmaceutical sales representatives.
April 19, NoonLawsuits filed on behalf of a psychologist and his practice had disclosed details of patients’ mental health diagnoses and treatments, including those of children. Psychologist Barry Helfmann denies wrongdoing.
April 18, 1:15 p.m.The federal government has proposed requiring that accreditors release reports on the problems they find during hospital inspections. Right now, the reports are secret.
March 24, 3:39 p.m.Roger Severino, the new head of the Office for Civil Rights within Health and Human Services, has opposed transgender patients’ rights, same-sex marriage and Planned Parenthood.
March 23, 5 a.m.We analyzed more than 575 press releases from representatives and senators about the Affordable Care Act and its repeal. Democrats, we found, speak more often and are more united.
March 22, 5 a.m.They’re full of lies and misinformation.
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