Dr. Matthew Martinez, DC with David Batten in Australia, June 2014
Photo courtesy: Absolute Health Clinic
In the Nisqually Valley News (NVN) online edition of July 29, 2015 and in their above-the-fold print edition dated July 31, 2015, the NVN stated:
“On March 20, 2015, the newspaper published a news story on page one with a headline that read “Chiropractor Who Led Ramtha DNA Study Sanctioned for Fraud.”
The article accurately reported chiropractor Matthew Martinez was charged by the Washington State Department of Health in November 2012 for (1) charging a patient’s insurance company for treatment the patient denied had been provided and which was not documented in chart notes for the patient and (2) advertising that he was a licensed massage therapist when he did not hold a current license for such position.”
– At first reading of this story, one may wonder what is the “correction” if the NVN “accurately reported” the story about Dr. Martinez, DC.
The issue is the story’s headline stated “Chiropractor Who Led Ramtha DNA Study Sanctioned for Fraud,” yet nowhere in the documents referenced by the NVN from the Washington State Department of Health or the State of Washington Chiropractic Quality Assurance Commission was “fraud” ever mentioned.
Click here for the public documents:
– NVN Publisher/Editor Michael Wagar told me on his arrival here,
“I am not your friend, nor am I your enemy, however I will be fair.”
Mr. Wagar has repeated this statement to me several times since.
While the newspaper’s “Correction” is admirable, this admission falls far short of an apology from connecting Dr. Martinez, DC to fraud in a high-profile story on March 20, 2015.
– Dr. Karriem H. Ali, MD questioned the NVN’s assertions last Spring:
“Your presentation appears to be founded upon allegations against Dr. Matthew Martinez, none of which relate in any way to the suitability of an individual to conduct DNA investigations,” quoting Dr. Ali’s letter to Mr. Wagar, which was also submitted to the Ramtha School of Enlightenment (RSE) Newsletter for publication, permission also provided to this Blog for posting.
The noted allegations are virtually slanderous related to the actual records found in my search. What I did find seems equivalent to mailing payment for an insurance bill, but forgetting to sign your check~ the corporation could very well treat your payment as fraudulent for not being appropriately signed and, as such, sanction you with fees for late and/or non-payment.”
– Linda Barnes,BA, MA, Ed.D said the NVN story was a “character assassination of a skilled doctor.”
Her Letter to the Editor was published in the NVN, quoted with permission, in-part:
“In response to the Nisqually Valley News article dated March 20, 2015, entitled ‘Chiropractor Who Led Ramtha DNA Study Sanctioned for Fraud,’ according to the Stipulated Finding of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Agreed Order the allegation of fraud is not true. The article is character assassination of a skilled doctor and caring, giving man.
Fraud has legal implications and is commonly understood as ‘dishonesty calculated for advantage.’ Legal fraud is a specific offense with certain features. The definition of medical fraud is ‘The intentional misrepresentation or deception resulting in payments for services not rendered.’
The Chiropractic Commission concluded, ‘the alleged conduct fell within Practice below the Standard of Care.’ This practice was related to patient documentation and billing process.”
“Dr. Martinez complied with all Orders. It is noted this Order was signed May 10, 2013. On March 20, 2015, there was less than two months to completion of the Order. For a two-year period, patient’s records/billings were scrutinized without further difficulty. The Nisqually Valley News reporting of the allegations and findings of fact appear distorted to support the alleged accusations.
On March 13, 2015, the Nisqually Valley News published an article titled “JZ Knight Claims DNA Switcheroo.” Dr. Martinez was the physician taking the DNA samples that were submitted to three independent laboratories for testing. The Nisqually Valley News article questioned and ridiculed the significant medical and scientific results. The article quoted information gathered from a plant geneticist. I wonder why the Nisqually Valley News did not search for a Board Certified medical geneticist. A simple web search found six Board Certified Medical Geneticists at the University of Washington.
The article labeling Dr. Martinez a “fraud” was written one week later on March 20. The articles appear to be designed to demean and discredit Dr. Martinez due to his involvement with the DNA testing. On March 27, the Nisqually Valley News’ “Question of the Week” was related to Dr. Martinez’s credibility. I cannot recall any individual who was presented by the Nisqually Valley News in this manner for public judgement (sic)/condemnation.
The Society of Professional Journalism Code of Ethics states: ‘Ethical journalism should be accurate and fair. The journalist should be honest and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting information.”
‘Journalist should: Take responsibility for the accuracy of their work. Verify information before releasing it. Use original sources when possible.'”
In the view of this Blogger, Mr. Wagar would live up to his commitment to be “fair” by issuing an official apology to Dr. Martinez, DC for what Ms. Barnes described as a “character assassination of a skilled doctor and caring, giving man.” Dr. Martinez deserves no less!
Blogger Klein is the former Event Services Manager of RSE and in his 30th consecutive year as a Ramtha student.
Dr. Karriem H. Ali, MD is a recent staff addition to Absolute Health Clinic in Olympia and long-time Ramtha student.