PeaceHealth terminated a Pharmarchy Tech, claiming she violated HIPPA. As a Pharmacy Tech that was working in the Emergency Department doing Med Recs, part of her duties is to review the patients file for details needed to completer the work. The Employer claimed she took a deep dive into the patients record and after going through the grievance process we advanced it to Arbitration.
OFNHP provided witness testimony and documents to support that this employee was doing her job. One interesting fact was the Arbitrator ruled that her Weingarten rights were violated when the Pharmacy Manager told her that Compliance wanted to talk with her. Ashley asked if she should get a Steward and the Manager suggested they only want to ask questions, they do this all the time and you’re not in any trouble. Not so fast, the Arbitrator ruled that was a violation. She also did not commit an intentional violation of HIPPA. Even if a worker thinks that a line of questioning potentially could result in discipline, they have Weingarten rights, not dependent on what the employer says.
The Arbitrator ruled to put her back to work with full back pay. Jessica Harrington was the Steward that worked on this. The other Stewards in the Pharmacy Robin Hendrix and Tina Davis also assisted with advice on the job of a Med Tech. Laurie Heppel the elected Bargaining Unit Chair provided valuable support. It was a group effort along with witness testimony that the Arbitrator found confident, credible and had an impact on the Arbitrators ruling.