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Hospital files response to doctor's discrimination lawsuit

Monday, October 18, 2021, 2:30 pm News Flash Archive

Lawyers for Greenwood Leflore Hospital have filed an answer in federal court to Dr. Preston Boles' lawsuit alleging racial discrimination.

In its answer, the Hospital has denied all claims of discrimination or of any action based upon race.

The Hospital's answer may be seen here:
GLH Answer to Boles Lawsuit

In Dr. Boles' lawsuit, he alleges that the hospital paid Dr. Joseph Assini, a fellow podiatrist, at a higher rate per procedure, because of his race. Assini, who passed away in May 2021, was white, while Dr. Boles is black. No misconduct by Assini is alleged in the lawsuit.

The Hospital admits that Assini was paid $52 per RVU, and that Boles was paid between $44 and $45 per RVU from 2014 through 2021. In its answer, no explanation for this difference is provided, but the Hospital denies that it was based upon race.

Generally, the podiatrists were compensated by the "RVU", or "relative value unit," a method of grading medical procedures used by Medicare to determine provider compensation. One common way for hospitals to pay employee providers is to pay a certain rate per RVU worked.

Boles also claims that the hospital breached its contract with him, paying less than had been agreed to. The Hospital denies that allegation.

The Taxpayers Channel's previous reporting on the Boles lawsuit may be viewed here:
Dr. Preston Boles sues Greenwood Leflore Hospital, claims racial discrimination.

In addition to denying any racial discrimination, the Hospital also denies Boles' claim that the contracts prohibited the employees from disclosing their salaries to other employees.

Boles made specific claims of amounts he was paid year by year, but the Hospital disputes those amounts as well.

GLH asserted the following defenses:

GLH acted reasonably and in good faith at all material times to this proceeding based on the facts and circumstances available and known to Defendant at the time.

GLH did not act intentionally, willfully, maliciously or recklessly to commit any alleged violation of law.

All actions taken by GLH concerning Plaintiff were for legitimate, nondiscriminatory business reasons, based on reasonable factors unrelated to Plaintiff's protected status.

Plaintiff [Boles] cannot demonstrate the requisite causal connection between his protected status and any adverse employment action taken by GLH.

Boles claims he discovered in late 2019 that he was being paid at a lower rate than was Dr. Assini.

Boles filed an EEOC complaint, and received his "right to sue" letter in May of this year.

John Pittman Hey
The Taxpayers Channel

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