Med student sues UT, claims retailiation for Facebook post

A student at UT Dell Medical School is suing the school, university and a supervisor. The student claims they retaliated against her for something she wrote on Facebook.

Dr. Jenny Scoville Walsh appeared in a Travis County courtroom Wednesday. She is suing dell medical school, UT and one of her professors.

She claims two Facebook posts lead to her impending dismissal from Dell Medical School.

"She was frustrated that she rarely sees her family, rarely sees her husband, is working on very little sleep, and is being told not to violate duty hours that she cannot not violate if she has to get all of this work done," said attorney Kerry O'Brien.
 
Attorney Kerry O'Brien says his client was working well over the maximum duty hours requirement of 80 hours per week set by the Accreditation Counsel for Graduate Medical Education. 
 
"UT can't have people violating duty hours, but they're consistently required to perform duties that are putting them into the 90-100 hour per week range. That obviously cannot only harm their personal lives but also can make them less effective if they're working on 4 or 5 hours of sleep while performing surgical procedures," said O'Brien.
 
O'Brien says several days after Walsh's posts, her supervisor, Dr. Charles Brown, ordered her to issue a retraction. Walsh complied.
 
On April 16th Walsh was informed she would be placed on a three month probation.
 
According to a filing by the attorney general's office, reasons for probation included, patient care issues, lack of preparation, inability to manage multiple patients, failure to maintain patient records and failure to communicate effectively with team members and patients.
 
It states Walsh did not appeal.
 
On August 3rd, the clinical competency committee voted unanimously to dismiss Walsh. 
 
On August 21st, Dr. Brown issued a dismissal notice stating Walsh's, "deficiencies undermine patient safety in obstetrics/gynecology and could result in grave consequences for the women (mother) and/or fetus."
 
O'Brien says his client claims the dismissal was retaliation.
 
"Her complaint was to friends and former residents on Facebook. It wasn't a formal complaint. And so she's not on a public crusade on this. She wants to keep her job and she deserves to," O'Brien said.
 
Walsh's attorney filed a restraining order to halt the dismissal, but a judge ruled Wednesday that the university could dismiss Walsh.
 
Seton hospital did not wish to comment.
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