Law Street Media

Lawrence Hospital Sued by Employee for FMLA Violations

A hospital viewed from the exterior.

large modern building with blue letter H sign for hospital

On Wednesday a case filed against Lawrence Memorial Hospital and several individuals was removed from Kansas state court to the federal equivalent. The case was filed by an employee and concerns alleged violations of privacy and the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

The plaintiff was receiving care from a physician and applied and received leave under FMLA. When the COVID-19 pandemic began, the plaintiff missed additional days due to symptoms of her current condition overlapping with those of COVID-19. Due to the number of days being missed, the defendants encouraged the plaintiff to see a doctor associated with the defendant, but plaintiff declined and continued to see her current physician. The defendants later confronted the plaintiff regarding the number of absentee days, but the plaintiff was informed that this confrontation was a mistake.

The plaintiff later saw a physician, one of the individual defendants, for an unrelated medical condition. A senior director, another individual defendant, then allegedly used the plaintiff’s medical information in a mass email discussion of issues with the referral system. The director also allegedly attempted to discuss the email with the plaintiff in a public setting. Both communications were public and included specific private details from the medical encounter.

Plaintiff is suing for Breach of confidentiality, intrusion on seclusion, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and retaliation for FMLA. Plaintiff is represented by Hook Law Office Chartered. Defendant is represented by Spencer Fane, LLP.

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