Woman claims firing from vets clinic illegal
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An Export woman who said she was overwhelmed by the workload at a private clinic for veterans in Greensburg sued the company and three of its employees late Thursday, saying she was worked to the point of panic and was harassed when she blew the whistle on medication management problems.
Anne Merical, 56, already had a seizure disorder, post-traumatic stress syndrome, depression and anxiety when she was hired by Valor Healthcare Inc., according to the complaint attorney Robert Owsiany filed in U.S. District Court. Valor, based in Washington, D.C., is paid by the Department of Veterans Affairs to run outpatient clinics nationwide for former soldiers.
Ms. Merical "was responsible for counseling and psychologically treating veterans," according to the complaint. She was given "a patient load that was excessive," and faced "an overwhelming number of phone calls," plus "a pile of faxes" that accumulated while she handled therapy sessions for veterans facing mental health crises, it said.
She asked for more staff, but was denied, according to the complaint.
After she went on leave for stress and panic attacks, she was fired in April 2011, according to the complaint. That constituted age discrimination, retaliation and violation of the family and medical leave act, it said.
First Published November 17, 2012 12:00 am