Alright – So I Like Beating Dead Horses!

I said that I wouldn’t do it anymore, but I can’t help it.

So I like beating dead horses.

Horse, Horses, Horseback Riding, Animals

The dead horse in question? The never-ending EEOC lawsuits filed under the ADA which target medical or health care providers.

When I wrote recently about three new such lawsuits filed by the EEOC, I quoted an EEOC attorney in who said that with respect to a hospital just sued: “Here is a case in which a hospital, which is in the business of caring for patients, has denied one of its own employees an equally attentive level of care.”

And when a hospital in Atlanta was sued recently by the EEOC under the ADA for denying an employee a two-week leave extension after he had emergency surgery, an EEOC attorney said: “One would expect that a hospital, of all places, would show understanding and fairness toward an employee who had recently had emergency surgery.”

I felt somewhat vindicated in my long-held belief that health care companies or medical providers are nice, fat targets for the EEOC under the Americans With Disabilities Act.   “In the business of caring for patients” and showing “understanding and fairness” – has a nice heroic, PR ring to it if you are the EEOC and looking to hit the jackpot.

Alas, although I promised – twice – not to write anymore about this subject, I guess it is just too easy a subject — for me too!

Well, the EEOC just announced another such suit, this time against a company that provides medical services in correctional institutions.  Seems that, according to the EEOC, an employee who is a licensed practical nurse began to have seizures, which she was able to control with meds.

When the company learned about this, its director of nursing required her to provide medical clearance in order to keep working, and when she provided a doctor’s note clearing her to return to work with certain restrictions – that same day – the company placed her on unpaid medical leave and fired her.

Oh well.

Takeaway:  Is it just me or does anyone else detect a pattern?


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Richard Cohen

Richard B. Cohen is a partner in the New York City office of FisherBroyles, LLP, a national law firm. Richard Cohen has litigated and arbitrated complex corporate, commercial and employment disputes for more than 35 years, and is a trusted advisor to business owners and in-house counsel both in the United States and internationally. His clients have included Fortune 100 companies, domestic and foreign commercial and investment banks, Pacific-rim corporations and real estate development companies, as well as start-up businesses throughout the United States. Email Richard at [email protected]