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WARREN Former employees file suit against nursing home



Published: Sat, July 20, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



WARREN -- Three former employees at Autumn Hills Care Center are suing the facility, claiming they lost their jobs after complaining about nursing home record-keeping.

Raymond Popa and Brian Koper, both licensed registered nurses, say they were fired from the Niles-Vienna Nursing Home after refusing to falsify entries on a chart for a dead patient.

In the lawsuit, filed Friday in Trumbull County Court of Common Pleas, the nurses claim that Autumn Hills had a regular policy of requiring employees to make fictitious notes on patient charts so it could be paid by Medicare or other insurance companies.

Jason Dipasqua, the nursing home administrator, said that is "absolutely not" the case.

He declined to comment further on the lawsuit before having a chance to read it.

A third licensed practical nurse, Keri Kondzich, says in the lawsuit that she was fired from Autumn Hills after complaining that her supervisor was forging a doctor's signature on patient charts, and also after protesting a lack of staffing at the facility.

The lawsuit, filed by Atty. Sarah Kovoor, seeks to recover income lost by the nurses, and also compensate them for the shame and embarrassment of losing their jobs.

Popa also argues that Autumn Hills inappropriately fired him for taking too many sick days.3




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