DARK REPORT and Editor Michel Earn National Reporting Award

News association bestows “Best Investigative Reporting” for coverage of unprecedented Vitamin D test inaccuracies

FOR THE SECOND TIME in recent years, Editor Robert L. Michel and THE DARK REPORT have won a national award for “Best Investigative Reporting.”

In Washington, DC, last month, at the Specialized Information Publishers Association (SIPA) annual conference, Editor Michel learned that judges had bestowed the First Place award for “Best Investigative Reporting” to THE DARK REPORT. The award was for its coverage of the unprecedented disclosure by Quest Diagnostics Incorporated that, for an 18-month period in 2007 and 2008, deficiencies in its home brew, tandem mass spectrometry Vitamin 25(OH) D testing program had caused it to report inaccurate results to what is estimated to be hundreds of thousands of patients.

This news story, first published in the December 22, 2008 issue of THE DARK REPORT, was picked up by the New York Times, ABC’s Good Morning America, and other national news outlets. It startled the public to learn that a respected laboratory company in this country had reported inaccurate lab test results for such an extended period of time. (See TDRs, December 22, 2008, January 12, 2009, and February 2, 2009.)

This prestigious national award for best investigative reporting is the second time that THE DARK REPORT and Michel have won such an award. In 2005, SIPA (then called the Newsletter and Electronic Publishers Association) Awarded THE DARK REPORT a “Best Investigative Reporting” award for its extensive investigation into anatomic pathology laboratory condominiums (pod labs) during 2004.

THE DARK REPORT’S exhaustive, detailed investigation into how urologists had created this AP condo business model and were selling it to other physicians is credited with attracting the attention of federal health regulators, who issued an unfavorable opinion letter on this business model in December 2004.

With this second journalism award, THE DARK REPORT continues to be the only news and business intelligence source in the lab testing industry to have earned such recognition at the national level. In turn, this is important validation for clients and regular readers that THE DARK REPORT is respected by other journalists for the quality and integrity of its reporting of lab industry news.

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