Judge dismisses whistleblower case against Extendicare

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A federal judge has dismissed a whistleblower lawsuit against Extendicare. The company, the judge said, was not liable under the state's whistleblower statute for demoting a nurse who complained to her superiors about alleged shortcomings in the company's policies and procedures.

The nurse, Carol Skare, simply made her complaints in the course of her normal job duties without the necessary goal of exposing illegal activity, according to Judge Richard Kyle for the U.S. District Court of the District of Minnesota. Therefore, her actions were not protected under the state statute. Kyle also rejected Skare's claim that she was constructively discharged since he said no evidence of "intolerable working conditions" sufficient to support the charge existed.

In her lawsuit Skare, a regional nurse consultant, claimed that she was demoted and "constructively" discharged in retaliation for routinely complaining that Extendicare nursing homes admitted residents they could not properly care for. She also believes the company acted against her for telling a supervisor that Extendicare facilities were in violation of state law because they allegedly did not have licensed administrators.
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