A former emergency room employee of Northwell Health Tuesday filed a complaint with the state Division of Human Rights, charging she was unlawfully terminated because she was suspected of leaking patient information about singer Justin Bieber to the media, her attorney said.
Kelly Lombardo, who had worked at the hospital system since 2007 as an ER representative, was fired in June after there had been leaks about Bieber being treated in May at the emergency room of North Shore University Hospital, said her attorney David H. Rosenberg of Mineola.
After Lombardo denied to a Northwell hospital supervisor that she knew anything about Bieber’s injury — which according to published reports involved his testicle — or seeking information about him, she was told: “You are young, female, and you’re telling me that you are not curious as to why he was seen in the ER?,” Rosenberg said.
Lombardo was fired shortly after that conversation and has been unemployed ever since, said Rosenberg, adding that he didn’t know his client’s exact age. A spokesman for the Division of Human Rights didn’t return a call for comment.
The complaint alleges gender discrimination, Rosenberg said. It lists both Northwell and Optum 360, a management agency through which Lombardo was employed, as respondents, the attorney said.
A spokeswoman for Northwell declined to comment on the case, citing rules on patient confidentiality. A spokesman for Optum 360 didn’t return repeated calls for comment.
The state agency must investigate the claim and rule whether there are grounds for a lawsuit.