The Northern Star, a News Ltd paper, continues to promote and protect the controversial occult healing corporation, Universal Medicine. Its report on the research controversy at University of Queensland whitewashes critical facts.
This morning, five days after the Australian Broadcasting Commission reported on the UQ trouble, The Northern Star got around to publishing a significant local story. The major players in the controversy are not only locals, but UM’s PhD student at the centre of the trouble is a Northern Star columnist. Others involved are associates of the paper’s compromised reporter, Hamish Broome. The delay might be understandable if they’d produced a report of substance, but in spite of the paper’s proximity to those involved, it fails at all levels of fact checking.
A NORTHERN Rivers group has responded to news of an investigation in which one of its members has been accused of failing to declare a conflict of interest in university research.
Nine of its members.
‘Group?’ It’s a corporation and it claims to be a religious movement.
The University of Queensland (UQ) will investigate after a complaint about PhD student Christoph Schnelle, who has ties to Goonellabah-based Universal Medicine (UM).
What are the ties?
As I revealed in my last post, he’s a long term UM adherent, a promoter, and a financial services provider to the UM community, including Benhayon’s benefactor, the late Judith McIntyre. Schnelle’s wife, Nicola Lessing, is a Unimed Living Pty Ltd company director.
UM founder Serge Benhayon said he had no involvement in the research in question, but noted the university would be “duty bound to investigate any complaint”.
No involvement? Serge was founder of the modalities under study, including bogus ‘Esoteric Connective Tissue Therapy‘ and the wacked ‘philosophy’ that goes with it. Three of the researchers staff his clinics, including physiotherapist Kate Greenaway, who has worked closely with him in Goonellabah since 2002.
Mr Schnelle said government departments were required to investigate all complaints “at great expense to the taxpayer and everyone involved”.
Providing infrastructure for bent researchers comes at great expense to the taxpayer too, Schnelle. As does the ensuing investigations when authors fail in their mandatory duty of disclosure. It also costs medical journals to publish research, investigate misconduct, publish retractions and deal with the fallout.
He said the complaint centered on a study which compared Universal Medicine members to participants in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health.
The University and the journals are investigating three papers published by Schnelle with eight UM co-authors on two research projects. I listed them in my previous post. This info is found on the journal articles. I linked to those.
Somehow the Northern Star missed the majority of the controversy.
‘Comparative’ study of the Brides of Serge
Schnelle C, Minford EJ, McHardy V, Keep J
A Group of 500 Women Whose Health May Depart Notably From the Norm: Protocol for a Cross-Sectional Survey
JMIR Res Protoc 2017;6(11):e234
URL: http://www.researchprotocols.org/2017/11/e234 DOI: 10.2196/resprot.7993
Schnelle C, Minford EJ, McHardy V, Keep J
Comparative Analysis of Women With Notable Subjective Health Indicators Compared With Participants in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health: Cross-Sectional Survey
JMIR Public Health Surveill 2018;4(1):e6
URL: http://publichealth.jmir.org/2018/1/e6 DOI: 10.2196/publichealth.9490
Esoteric Connective Tissue Therapy
- Christoph Schnelle, MBiostats – financial planner. Testimonial page on his website shows clients are UM staff & followers. Includes a testimonial from Benhayon’s benefactor Judith McIntyre. Wife, Nicola Lessing, is a Unimed Living Pty Ltd company director. Unimed Living is 100% owned by Serge. Both are UM promoters and have been frequent flyers at UM events for at least ten years.
- Eunice J Minford, MA, MBChB, FRCSEd – NHS surgeon and promoter of UM’s exorcism services and Esoteric Breast Massage.
- Vanessa McHardy, MA – London based psychotherapist. Presenter at UM’s 2013 psychological wellbeing conference.
- Jane Keep, PhD – NHS HR manager. Former Esoteric Breast Massage practitioner and former director of Universal Medicine UK Ltd. Current director of UM’s UK charity, ‘Sound Foundation Community Care‘. Promotes UM’s brand by sharing her conversations with her cervix.
- Steffen Messerschmidt – ‘Naturopathic Doctor’, whatever that means. Practitioner at Unimed Brisbane. I blogged about him plugging esotericism to a hospital in Vietnam in 2013.
- Kate Greenaway-Twist BAppSc(PT), Physiotherapist at UM’s clinic headquarters in Goonellabah and Benhayon associate and collaborator since 2002.
- Dr Maxine Szramka MBBS (hons1), B Med Sci, FRACP, FAMAC pt1,Rheumatologist – ardent public promoter of UM, who, with UM’s other affiliated doctors, refuse to answer questions about their promotions of commercial occult pseudoscience.
- Marianna Masiorski B Psych (Hons) MAPS – Unimed Brisbane psychologist. Was reprimanded and placed on conditional registration by AHPRA in 2015 over her promotions of Benhayon and UM.
- Michelle Sheldrake – Esoteric practitioner and QUT Research Officer
The peer-reviewed article appeared in the Journal of Medical Internet Research. “Notably, nobody has questioned the validity of these results,” Mr Schnelle said.
The results aren’t valid if you fail at the first hurdle, Schnelle – mandatory disclosure of conflicts of interest.
I notice he didn’t disclose to the reporter that there were two projects either. But she should have done her job.
“What has been questioned is the relationship of the researchers to Universal Medicine.” He said researchers linked to UM did declare the connection in submitting the article.
From the published article:
Mr Schnelle said the allegations were “at best, complete nonsense”.
But the Four Lords of Form are real, and spirits are nine feet tall and have no feet.
Mr Schnelle writes a financial advice column for The Northern Star for which he is not paid. The Northern Star
The Northern Star provides Schnelle with regular advertorial column space.
And another free pass for UM’s misconduct.
Coming soon: Hamish Broome – UM’s man on the Northern Star