Exclusive: ND Whistleblower Exposes Significant COVID Testing Problems

  • by:
  • Source: UncoverDC
  • 09/19/2023
  • Whistleblower contacts UncoverDC because of an article published on Memorial Day.
  • The information comes in the form of a google document containing a letter from a whistleblower and eye witness testimony from an MLS Lab tech and a nurse who contacted him.
  • It details stunning issues with Real-Time RT-PCR testing during the height of the pandemic, including a significant number of false-positive results, as well as serious malfunctions in the equipment used to test.
  • The laboratory was using unlicensed technicians to process testing, against state law.

A whistleblower from North Dakota contacted UncoverDC in response to an article we published on Memorial Day about the devastating effects of governmental policies—including the alarming suppression of knowledge, including information related both to SARS-CoV-2 and PCR threshold cycles.

The information explained here primarily reflects the retelling by the whistleblower of many months of observations and conversations. The whistleblower, a Chiropractor and former nurse, who has been active in the Health Freedom Movement, forwarded to UncoverDC his letter containing direct testimony from a temporary licensed Medical Lab Scientist (MLS tech) and a nurse in a long-term care facility. The letter is entitled "How to Lie with Numbers."

The information shared became significant enough for the whistleblower to write the Google Docs letter discussed in this article. The letter begins with the whistleblower's explanations and then moves to timelines of events and communications with the two eyewitnesses mentioned above.

In terms of witness testimony contained in the letter, they are mostly presented as screenshots of texts, emails, and various oral communications between the lab tech and the whistleblower. There are also documented conversations, oral and some written, between the nurse and the whistleblower. The information provided is voluminous.

Today's article will attempt to distill the information into digestible pieces so that the content and timelines are more easily comprehensible as a whole. The letter was first sent as a draft to Governor Burgum and then officially sent to the State Auditor, Josh Gallion, and several legislators.

Apparently, there have been some questionable practices in the Public Health Laboratory (State Lab), resulting in Covid19-related policies that have dramatically affected the daily life of many North Dakotans. The essence of this article is to look at the policies, decisions, and practices of government officials and medical professionals that impacted the daily lives of average Americans who have relied on these officials and professionals for information—with no real way to know at any given point in time, whether those decisions and policies were grounded in experience and well-informed science. The way things were and are being done in North Dakota may well be representative of how things were and are being done throughout the country.

According to the whistleblower, an audit of the State Lab is now underway. The whistleblower believes his letter may be one of the reasons the audit is now being conducted. His letter, he believes, may also have triggered testimony to the House Human Services Committee in January by Christie Massen, who is the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) Microbiology Section Chief Laboratory Officer for the State Lab.

Letter Gets Attention of State officials

The Whistleblower Letter

Written to the "Citizens of North Dakota," he becomes the messenger for how things were being done at the State Lab, which is Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) certified, and a BSL-3 and BSL-2 lab. Much of the letter describes the standards, policies, and conduct of the lab during the pandemic with regard to Real-Time RT-PCR testing(updated 12-01-2020). The MLS tech seems to indicate that the lab was also later performing antigen testing, but Massen says in the hearing that other labs are doing that. That is important because there is mention of contamination as having been a factor when switching between the two tests. UncoverDC has not verified this information. Also of note is the fact that this lab was and is taking the assays one step beyond the PCR testing and performing genome sequencing on the specimens "to look for variants."

The letter is an off-the-record but detailed case study that confirms more specifically much of the information reported by UncoverDC previously.

Dear Citizens of North Dakota/Whistleblower

With painstaking detail, the letter describes what he and his whistleblowers claim to be multiple missteps and possible malfeasance and/or violations of the law for a period of about 8 months. Issues like:

  • threshold "cycles that were WAY too high";
  • problems with State Lab procedures and practices associated with PCR and Antigen testing;
  • questionable hiring practices of uncertified temporary unlicensed lab personnel called Laboratory Technician Assistants (LTA's) for the State Lab, which the Chief Lab Officer seems to rationalize in her testimony in January;
  • a Thermo Fisher Amplitude System machine that did not seem to be functioning properly for an undetermined period of time. Apparently, this high-throughput automated testing system was brought to market in early August;
  • and lockdown directives from the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDOH) that often did not seem to be grounded in science.

In some cases, protocols like high cycle thresholds or issues with the Thermo Fisher Amplitude System machine correlated suspiciously closely, at times, with restrictive lockdowns that were wreaking havoc on the lives of North Dakotans.

Unfortunately, these types of issues may have been the case in many other parts of the country. Certainly, the recent drop in cycle thresholds to RT-PCR Ct value of ≤28 may well be one indication of whacky science— as have been the way cases have been so unreliably reported.

Sketchy Numbers

It is also plausible that other states have faced similar pressures to hire unlicensed, temporary employees to perform functions for which they may not have had the proper training or experience because the demand for the tests was so extraordinary.

On multiple occasions, over a period of months, the lab tech repeats his/her concerns.

For example, the whistleblower explains that it was "the very lab testing used to shut down our ENTIRE state/country." So, lab protocols and information were coming out of the labs. That same information and data were then used to dictate policy in the state. The same information informed executive orders. All while many very worried technicians who were concerned with inaccuracies and hiring practices were begging to be heard. The question is asked in the letter:

Wondering Outloud,

The technicians who were sounding the alarm felt ignored and/or were told to "ignore the huge discrepancies of false-positives/machine malfunction" for months

The very lab testing used to shut down our country

The whistleblower claims that it wasn't until he sent his letter shortly after Christmas that health and lab officials took notice. The MLS tech had also exchanged distraught and very detailed emails, captured below, with (CLIA) Surveyor, Shelly Heilman, asking critical questions related to hiring practices and lab procedures.

CLIA is the body that monitors compliance for certified labs. Every lab in the U.S. must be CLIA compliant to perform tests with specimens from human patients. Heilman seems to be genuinely responsive to the concerns. Still, eventually, the lab tech was asked to contact the Attorney General and/or State's Attorney as well as Zuleika Aponte at the CLIA Denver Regional Office. Heilman explained that it is a "conflict of interest for a state agency to inspect or investigate complaints lodged against the lab."

The January 13, 2021 Hearing

Shortly after the whistleblower letter was sent, NDDoH Microbiology Section Chief Laboratory Officer, Christie Massen, testified before the House Health Committee on January 13. The hearing is an important window into the world of the State Lab during the pandemic as it aligns very closely with the very information being reported by the whistleblower MLS tech—but from the perspective of its Chief Laboratory Officer, Christie Massen.

Massen can be seen here explaining to the House Human Services Committee how they caught the malfunction of the Thermo Fisher Amplification System. She also walks the committee through many of her decisions during the pandemic. Her testimony also includes her rationale for using the unlicensed lab technicians. (*See timestamp 2:18:00 in her testimony for her explanation.)

Hearing Testimony: Staffing of the Lab

During the 3-4 minute portion of her testimony, Massen explains that they were understaffed and needed help with specimen processing and the preparation of specimens. She states that to "offset the workload burdens," she hired traveling techs and local unlicensed LTA's—who were all "part of the temporary employee group."

Notably, she states that she recently "stopped utilizing the Laboratory Technician Assistants or LTA's for the extraction process...[and] that definitely spurred some interest from the public."

She tells the legislators she had tried to get a straight answer during a "special meeting" with the Board of Clinical Lab Practice back on March 25th concerning where in the lab testing process she could legally use those unlicensed lab assistants—specifically whether those techs could be used in the extraction process. Massen explains as she examined the CLIA regulations, she found, "In none of the regulations... does CLIA define where extraction actually falls." Massen continued, "There are three phases of testing specimens; Pre-analytical, analytical, and post-analytical." Massen also stated she "personally viewed extraction as a "pre-analytical step."

Per Massen's testimony, extraction means "the removing of any RNA itself from the specimen itself and prepping that for the actual analysis." Therefore, in her opinion, it's a pre-analytical step.

In March, she and the Board of Clinical Lab Practice agreed to hire unlicensed assistants due to confusion about where extractions fall in the three phases per CLIA regulations. Those unlicensed Lab Assistants performed extractions for a period of months because "the Board [of which she is a member] couldn't give her anything in writing because they can't interpret law like that" and because her interpretation of the stage at which extraction was performed "sounded reasonable and fair." Massen explained the answers she received from CLIA at the time as one of being "no opinion" at all.

Massen goes on to say that she "recently" changed her policy because she and Lab Director Laurie Linz:

"Worked through the NDSU diagnostic lab in helping them get up and established, some questions got asked between the state CLIA office and our CLIA director...there was a Ph.D., for example, out um, out at the Vet Diagnostic Lab who's been doing extraction in the lab and molecular testing on animals for over a decade—so well qualified if you will. And, uh, CLIA had said they're not qualified because they require a state license. And so, when we looked back and pressed the CLIA office a little bit more, they did make the determination that they see the extraction process as part of analysis. And so, on that day, then we stopped using the LTA's for extraction. On that particular day, because the interpretation as we were presented with the CLIA regulations looked different and, um, since I, since I serve on the Board of Clinical Lab Practice, I didn't risk going back to the Board and saying, 'Do you guys still think that they need a license?' I just went with the fact that the board will probably say that they need a license and stopped immediately because it just wasn't worth the fight any longer."

To be clear, Massen states that the LTA's were all "qualified individuals," they just didn't have a state license.

Interestingly, on Jan. 28, the North Dakota Health Department website released a document about the procedures followed during the pandemic. The document memorializes and backs up Massen's statements during the hearing.

NDDoH Document/Jan. 28, 2021

Finally, there is an addendum within the document that clarifies and, sometimes, speculates. The addendum also brings the reader to where things stand today.

Below are some questions pondered by the whistleblower, found in the addendum. "She" refers to Massen. The Nurse whistleblower claims are also captured below:

Whistleblower Wonderings/Addendum

What Happens When Labs Make Mistakes During Covid—Skroch/Massen Exchange

In a critical exchange between Representative Kathy Skroch (R) and Christie Massen during the hearing, Skroch pointedly asks Massen whether she understands just how impactful the "mistakes" being made in the lab are for the Bismarck community. She also asks Massen what she has done to correct the data put out by the Thermo Fischer Amplitude System, how far back she has corrected the data, and whether the people who thought they had positive tests were informed of the data inaccuracies. This exchange begins at timestamp 2:46 in the hearing. It is a poignant representation of the conversation legislators, and everyday citizens have been engaged in with regard to the pandemic.

Kathy Skroch: If there is a questionable positive test or if accuracy is in question, are those numbers removed from the positive list or do they just never show up on the list or how is that handled?"

Christie Massen: It depends on when we catch it. With every run that we have...if I see something here on the plate (specimen plate) that I don't particularly like, I'll pull that and rerun that and no report is ever actually given until I rectify the situation and get a true result from that specimen, whether it is positive, negative or inconclusive. And so that's never reported to the patient, the physician or the system. Now where we've had cases where we've talked to the public, where we have gone in and have changed positive results to inconclusive after we've gone back and looked at different things, yes, that number does change. We do report back to the division of disease control and they go back into their system and they adjust the result to the appropriate result or the new result—which typically ends up being an inconclusive result...for example, one of the last situations that just happened with the Amplitude System, we just released to the news that we found over 180 cases of potentially false-positive results but we have no way to prove they were false-positive results...so we changed the results to inconclusive.

The paragraph below is taken from the Jan. 28 NDDoH document mentioned above.

NDDoH Laboratory Document/Jan. 28, 2021

Skroch: To follow up on that. When you have found the 180 false positives, the individuals have already been informed?

Massen: Yes, and it's very unfortunate when this does happen. This was a really unfortunate situation that happened to us last week.

Skroch: What was the date of that ...?

Massen: January 8... Um, the really unfortunate thing—and this is the ugly side of the lab. We do make mistakes. But under normal practices and procedures, we would not have normally found it...On January 8th, one of the laboratorians had taken samples from the previous week or two to move on for that whole genome sequencing, [like] I told you about. And so, we were looking to map out those positives to screen for that variant. So we were doing additional testing above and beyond our normal practices and procedures....and got discrepant results...and we found a really unfortunate software issue...so the interpretive software on the Amplitude System inappropriately read some of the results...so we're working very closely with Thermo Fisher to resolve this issue...we actually stumbled on a really big issue for the manufacturer... So we actually went all the way back to December 5th to see how far the software was a problem for us and so that's where we've identified, I believe 181 since Christmas Day—which was incredibly unfortunate but, um. I'm incredibly proud of the lab team for being able to find this. It also helps show that the laboratory, um, isn't just pushing out results and looking the other direction. We're actually able to identify these potential false positives and really fix our numbers so that we really do get a true picture of what's happened in the state. Not to downplay how unfortunate it is that there are individuals who ended up going into quarantine on Christmas or after [that] maybe didn't need to.

Skroch: So, in those unfortunate situations, is there follow-up to ensure they never happen again? Secondly, when those situations are identified, what resolution is there for the false-positive individual because there are, in some cases, very catastrophic things that happen to those people. And, in all fairness, once you've triggered a positive, it triggers other situations as well. And so, say in my mother's case, she triggered a positive that is very suspicious and now she can't be tested again to prove whether or not it is a positive, and now she has that label on her in a nursing home.

Notably, Massen testified that the North Dakota State Lab was the fourth in the world to procure the Thermo Fisher System. The system makes the processing of the assays more efficient by orders of magnitude—a necessity during the pandemic when the pressure was so intense to produce results for so many people.

At the peak of the pandemic response, according to Massen, "We went from doing less than 200 tests per day to doing—to having a capacity for 7500 tests or more just for Covid alone. We increased our capacity and our throughput on a huge scale." Additionally, she mentioned that they had "18 Full-Time Equivalent Employee (FTEs) and one temporary employee pre-Covid...at peak." As per the document below, the team grew to over 180 team members (temporary employees).

NDDoH Document/Jan. 28, 2021

City Commission Meeting One; City Commission Meeting Two

There are two key City Commission meetings referenced by the whistleblower. The longer meeting on Oct. 27, 2020, was called to discuss, in part, proposed mask mandates with the resulting conversation about proposed mitigation measures. The shorter Nov. 10 meeting followed to discuss, in part, the results of a request for hospital census information requested by City Commissioner Mark Splonskowski from Bismarck City Attorney, Janelle Combs whose job it was to obtain the data.

Commissioner Splonskowski at the October 27 City Commission Meeting: Hospital Census, Incentivizing Tests and Cycle Thresholds

Commissioner Splonskowski requested a detailed census from two Bismarck hospitals during an October 27 Commission Meeting. He requested the census because he disagreed with what he believed to be Draconian measures imposed and proposed in North Dakota—with "little data to back them up." At one point in the meeting, Splonskowski mentioned that the city was incentivizing people to get Covid-19 tested. Below are the details of Splonskowski's request.

Splonskowski Census Request/Oct. 27, 2020

Per kxnet.com reporting on Nov. 10, "Specifically, Splonskowski requested hospital and ICU census information, the number of staffed beds and number of full-time and part-time nurses, among other information." 

City Attorney Janelle Combs presented a proposal for a new month-long virus mitigation strategy during the same meeting. Combs presented her argument for a new masking requirement starting at the 3:11:24 timestamp. Splonskowski was adamantly against a proposed month-long masking strategy at the meeting.

Splonskowski repeatedly showed himself to be a forceful advocate for his constituents, saying that the people of Bismarck were "Covided out" and needed more freedom to make their own choices. He also pushed for religious exemptions for churches.

Mark Splonskowski weighs in on mask mandates below. Is masking based on science? Do we trust our constituents to make good decisions?:

Between Oct. 27 and Nov. 10, City Attorney Janelle Combs requested the data but received seemingly bureaucratic responses in return. The upshot of the Combs' correspondence in the Nov. 10 Commission meeting was that provision of the census information would "require a legal process." The Commission to date has not pursued legal action, per Splonskowski.

Please note that if you click on the "requested" link above provided by kxnet.com, the link goes nowhere. However, UncoverDC found that the link was from November 3rd correspondence between Combs and the hospitals, which UncoverDC obtained directly on Thursday from Splonskowski's office.

On Thursday, UncoverDC contacted Gloria David, the Public Information Officer for the City of Bismarck, and she responded Friday with an explanation for the missing information on the government website. A screen cap below shows the answer that was kindly provided by David.

Gloria David Email/Public Information Officer/Bismarck, ND,

UncoverDC also reached Commissioner Splonskowski on Thursday evening by phone. He told UncoverDC that the City Attorney and the hospitals basically told him "to go pound sand" in the November 10 Commission meeting at 55:18 timestamp, where Combs reports back after having requested the hospital census data.

The whistleblower believes that conflicts of interest prevented Combs from truly pursuing the data, calling her a Marble Cake Baker. He told UncoverDC that he "attended most of the city meetings through this debacle."

In the Nov. 10 City Commission meeting, Combs states that the hospitals have "indicated that absent some legal request or licensing that would require them to provide the data, they are unwilling to do so at this time.” Splonskowski's response, “The hospitals are pushing us and pushing us to take measures that are controversial, but they are unwilling to give us any perspective.” Notably, the commission ultimately "Did not move forward with considering any ordinances that could require businesses to provide them information," per the reporting by kxnet.com

A screenshot of the whistleblower's answer, when asked by UncoverDC about Combs, is below in the black box. His answer referred to what he perceives as her active involvement in Draconian restrictions imposed by the local government.

In fact, her statements during the Oct. 27 meeting show her citing "the police powers of public health and safety" as a justification for pandemic-related emergency orders. She also brought in a panel of medical experts for the meeting to back up her request to impose mitigation strategies.


Census Request from Hospitals/North Dakota

October 27 City Commission Meeting: Citizens Speak up and Dr. Mateo Weighs In

A couple of key interactions occurred during the Oct. 27 City Commission Meeting. In one instance, it was a concerned citizen who spoke about the proposed mask mandates and the lack of real science surrounding their use as a way to "stop the spread." The other was an interaction between Commissioner Mark Splonskowski and Dr. Mateo, a specialist in infectious disease and travel medicine, concerning cycle thresholds for the PCR tests.

The citizen stood up at the meeting to dispute the effectiveness of cloth masks, based on research and CDC statements with qualifying words like "may" and "might" to describe their effectiveness.

"The CDC says on their website that the masks may provide reasonable protection," he said. "The reason they used the word 'may' a lot is because there are no studies. You guys are making these decisions on no studies, certainly no peer-reviewed studies."

He called the masks  "pandemic pageantry" and said they are making policy decisions based on "authoritarian appeals."

At timestamp 4:05, Mark Splonskowski asks Dr. Mateo, "Has the virus been isolated and replicated in order to make a better test, and also, has there been a gold standard for the PCR test." Splonskowski has to ask the question twice to get a direct answer.

Mateo stated that the current iteration of the PCR test:

"Is very sensitive and it's very specific...when the cycle time is 35 or higher, you're stretching the capacity of the test to detect something there.. and when you're cycling, you get a positive signal when it is 35 or higher then potentially all you're picking up are viral fragments of the RNA, fragments of nucleic acid. It's no longer intact virus. It's no longer infectious. That patient who has that PCR test result is likely no longer contagious.

What we know about the natural history of infection is that people get symptomatic, they got exposed, they got infected, then symptomatic. Ten days later, when populations have been looked at, the PCR cycle times are that high and, more importantly, these folks have specimens submitted to the laboratory to see if you can get the virus, if you can culture the virus out, if you can get something live and those individuals, on average, 10 days after symptoms and by then they're better, they're breathing easier, they're no longer requiring oxygen and they've no longer got a fever. There's no virus detectable in those individuals." Mateo also said that when people get "re-infected," they "actually have a second different strain of virus." 

Splonskowski also asked Mateo how accurate the current PCR test is because he is seeing a lot of reports of false positives. Mateo stated that:

"How well these tests perform depends on the timing, when it is you draw it, the technique, properly done you're gonna have a PCR test that is better than 97 percent sensitive and 99 percent specific. In other words, a positive result means that what you've got there is likely to be Coronavirus, Sars-Coronavirus-Covid19, and not any other virus. Sensitivity, of course, means...the virus is there. It is a success of picking it up. That is just the test characteristic.

What people don't realize is that, as clinicians, as doctors, we take the flip side of the equation. We ask ourselves if this test is positive, what are the chances that the patient really has the disease? If this test is negative, what are the chances that the patient doesn't have the disease? Those are slightly different questions and that's what we ask on a day-by-day basis when confronted with the result. In simplest terms, how believable is this result? And, I can tell you right now, the PCR test is the most believable thing we have out there."

NDDoH Laboratory Document/Jan. 28, 2021

The ThermoFisher TaqPath instructions can be found here.

The video below shows Splonskowski's exchange with Dr. Mateo. Later he wonders why Bismarck is incentivizing Covid testing:

An addendum included in the letter, to be discussed at the end, summarizes where things stand today. According to the whistleblower, an audit of the State Lab is now in process and is being run by the State Auditor.

Timeline Of The Letter

The letter states that, on Nov. 6, a "draft" of it arrived "informally" on Governor Burgum's desk. Allegedly, per the whistleblower, there were fireworks on that day between the Governor's office and the lab/NDDOH with regard to the functioning of the Thermo Fischer machine, an amplification system, which was allegedly throwing preposterous numbers of positive runs (30+). Which, according to Massen, was because of software problems that produced false positives in about one-third of the test runs. The Thermo Fischer machine test runs were also being compared to the Abbott analyzer by licensed lab techs.

The Abbott machine was allegedly producing more believable results and, therefore, was a good control. Below is a screenshot of some of what was contained in the aforementioned draft "with two lines removed for anonymity."

Thermo Fischer Test Results

A video explaining how the ThermoFischer system is implemented can be seen below:

On Nov. 9, the letter says, "The [Bismarck] tribune states that the reason for lower numbers [of positive covid cases?] is because they had to shut down a testing machine for malfunction over the weekend." While trying to find the referenced report, UncoverDC found that this was apparently not the first time the state had problems associated with the testing machines.

As an aside, an article was published on May 26, 2020, by the Williston-Herald stating that something "Went wrong...with the accuracy of the Covid-19 tests." Remarkably, in May, Massen barely alluded to the issue in a press conference on the same day, stating only that "The manufacturers of the equipment and the supplies have been leaders in the field for a long time. They are credible and reliable. We also have a lab full of critical thinkers who excel in what they do..."   

A Facebook video, posted by the NDDoH entitled, Dr. Christie Massen—How the Lab Caught Equipment Malfunction, shows Massen explaining how her lab caught errors and then fixed them. According to the NDDoH Lab document referenced above, those machines were "two Abbott M2000 instruments that malfunctioned on several runs over the course of the three days."

Bismarck Tribune/machine malfunction/PCR testing

On Nov. 10, an anonymous letter on PCR testing was sent to the "State Auditor and some legislators" about "inaccuracies in lab testing procedures" and explains that the author of that letter will come forward if an investigation is opened.

One instance of inaccuracies in testing reportedly involved tests run on 12 kits by practitioners in the Bismarck-Mandan area that "never touched human saliva..without letting the lab know." 6 of the 12 returned positive results—which alone indicates "a massive problem with testing accuracy and reliability."

12 Kits No Saliva

The letter also explains that a nurse found significant problems at a local long-term care facility where 25 positive tests were reported. Only one of the people tested had any symptoms. The next day they were all retested and all came back negative.

Anonymous Letter to State Auditor

On Nov. 11, a lab worker raised concerns about the credentials of those running the lab, including Massen. An organizational chart and explanation of who should be in charge is also mentioned in the Whistleblower Letter.

The lab tech explains that Dirk Wilke is a lawyer, not an MD or a pathologist and that while Christie Massen has a Ph.D. in Microbiology, she is neither a pathologist nor an MD. According to the whistleblower, Joan Connell is an MD but has nothing to do with the lab.

Org Chart Health Department/North Dakota

During testimony in January about the state laboratory, Laurie Linz was mentioned. UncoverDC has verified that Laurie Linz, MD, is a Cytopathologist and is, indeed, the CLIA Laboratory Director.

According to Massen, "She came on as a temporary Director during the pandemic." The MLS lab tech reported that she is "no more than a figurehead," and she had never met her. According to Massen, Linz collaborated closely during the pandemic.

The letter continues with the following observations and claims:

"All state labs are required to have a pathologist on staff....at all times should have a competent running a lab...[and] there are many in the lab not appropriately licensed, especially with the Thermo Fischer machines" found to be malfunctioning."

On Nov 15, the Lab Tech wrote the following, giving an "official account" and again willing to testify if an investigation is opened.

Official Letter/Lab Testing Inaccuracies

Importantly, the Lab Tech notes that there is "enormous pressure to constantly test and put out numbers, "...which may be why things were not completely shut down when inaccuracies were noted to "make sure everything is working properly."

On Nov. 28, North Dakota issued a policy statement on "all COVID testing," suddenly requiring that any run testing with a positivity rate of greater than 15 percent needs to be investigated. The statement indicated a significant change in protocols in the State Lab.

Nov. 28 North Dakota Testing Protocol changes

The whistleblower wonders out loud why the change is suddenly issued after many weeks of begging the NDDoH to look at the extraordinarily high number of positive covid tests—observing that "positive tests are needed to decline to claim success of the new lockdown orders."

UncoverDC can confirm that mitigation efforts (lockdowns) went into effect with Gov. Burgum's Executive order 2020-43 because of an alleged sharp increase in cases as of Nov. 13—to remain in effect until December 13, 2020. Put in place were suspensions of school classes and sports activities. Severe restrictions were placed on businesses, including 50 percent occupancy reduction rates, mandated wearing of masks, etc. (See discussion of Splonskowski and Combs.)

North Dakota Lockdowns/November-December

On December 11, more testimony is documented. The MLS Tech explains many of the issues discussed above:

The use of unlicensed lab assistants "since around June of 2020", a "shut down of the whole Thermo Fisher Room, calls to various officials about the training and scope of practice of unlicensed lab assistants—and a discussion about the fact that in all the other labs where the MLS tech has worked, Lab assistants have only been 'allowed to pour over specimens, answer phones, draw blood, process specimens and THAT'S IT'."

The December 11 section of the letter also cites such violations as a Class B misdemeanor.

December 11 MLS Tech comments

The Emails

In the interest of accuracy, screenshots are posted below of all the emails sent between the whistleblower MLS Tech and CLIA Surveyor, Shelly Heilman, and the Laboratory Technician Credentialing Board (NDCBLP) represented by Nikki Owings. The emails sent between Dec. 14 and Dec. 17 speak for themselves.

Whistleblower's Introduction to Emails 

Intro. to Emails/Whistleblower Narrative

Emails Between Lab Tech and Heilman Beginning on Dec. 14, 2020

Heilman/Dec. 14

Heilman Email/Dec. 14

Heilman Redacted Email/Dec. 14

Heilman Email/Dec.16

Heilman Email/Dec. 16

Heilman Email/Dec. 16

Heilman Email/Dec. 16

Tech Email/Dec. 16

Correspondence Via Email Between Lab Tech and NDCBLP with Whistleblower Intro.

Whistleblower Intro./NDCBLP Emails

Lab Tech to NDCBLP email/Dec.17

NDCBLP Email/Dec. 17

*Please note that Owings mentions the review on Jan. 12, 2021. Massen testified before House Health Committee on Jan. 13.

NDCBLP Email/Dec. 17

NDCBLP Email/Dec. 17


Some of the information contained in the Addendum has been woven throughout this article for context. However, there is some information starting on Feb. 4 and ending on Feb. 6, 2021, as recounted by the whistleblower that is captured below:

Addendum/Feb. 4

Addendum Feb 6

The rest of the addendum contains opinions written by the whistleblower about a variety of information that has been publicly available—opinions about cycle thresholds, the vaccine, Bill Gates involvement and investment in the development of vaccines, and the financial incentives that allegedly drive much of what has happened during the pandemic. For the purposes of this article, those opinions can be found within the whistleblower letter.

It is not a stretch to say that the events that have transpired in North Dakota concerning the handling of the pandemic by government and medical officials are perhaps a microcosm of events on a larger scale in cities and states throughout the U.S. Clearly, many citizens in this country have been rightly confused about where the truth lies in relation to the data, the science, and the information being given. The decisions have profoundly impacted the lives of everyday Americans.

In no way does this author make any claims of malicious intent on the part of government and medical professionals. In many cases, it is very likely that many have been genuinely dedicated to serve Americans and ensure their safety. As with most human endeavors, it is also very likely that, in some cases, mistakes have been made, transparency has been lacking, motives have been less than pure, and objective, longstanding scientific methodologies and practices have not been followed. There is also evidence that the media has been a poor purveyor of information—failing to present the kind of information Americans need to make well-informed decisions.

UncoverDC has made every effort to present the voluminous information here with great care. Stones were unturned, leads have been followed, and original words have been used in full context wherever possible. As always, it is your job to read and discern. Please also take the time to read the document in its entirety. Hopefully, this piece will help to further orient your understanding of its contents.

Finally, some food for thought. A powerful interview with WHO whistleblower and Swiss scientist, Astrid Stuckleberger in the recently produced film, Planet Lockdown:

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