Agency Nurse Fired for Alleged Resident Abuse Cannot Prove Defamation, Libel, or Slander

May 18, 2020 | Aging Services Risk Management


The Supreme Judicial Court of Maine has affirmed summary judgment in favor of the nursing home defendants in a lawsuit for defamation and for slander or libel per se brought by an agency registered nurse (RN). The nursing home had terminated the nurse's assignment after investigating allegations that she abused a resident.

About nine months after the nurse began working for the staffing agency, she was assigned to the nursing home. When she had been working at the nursing home for about six months, a resident told another nurse that the night before, the RN had "ripped the call bell off his shirt" and put it out of his reach. Reportedly, she said, "How do you like that?" and she told the resident...

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