Medical Center Accused of Gender Discrimination

August 12, 2011 ( - The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed suit in federal court against Audrain Medical Center in Mexico, Missouri, alleging that it violated federal law by refusing to transfer a male nurse into the operating room because it preferred to have a female nurse in the room when female patients were being treated.

According to EEOC attorney Melvin Kennedy, Audrain revealed during the EEOC investigation that with the overwhelming presence of male surgeons and anesthesia staff, the hospital felt it must have female nursing staff in the operating room. “The hospital’s failure to attract and hire women into the higher paying surgeon and anesthesia positions does not justify its insistence that it have female nursing staff in the OR,” said Kennedy, in a press release.  

The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri (Case No. 4:11-cv-1369) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.  

Audrain Medical Center employs approximately 500 people and serves primarily Mexico, Missouri, and surrounding communities.