Press Release 01-07-2021

EEOC and Hennepin Healthcare System Agree to Settle Class Discrimination Investigation

Federal Agency Works with Healthcare Provider to Eliminate Policy Which Affected Older Practitioners

MINNEAPOLIS – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced it has reached a settlement with Hennepin Healthcare System, Inc. (HHS), a healthcare provider within Hennepin County, Minnesota, to resolve investigations conducted by the EEOC under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, as amended (ADEA), and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (ADA).

The EEOC investigation determined that HHS’s “Late Career Practitioner Policy” discriminated against practitioners age 70 and older by requiring them to undergo age-related screenings and medical examinations, in violation of the ADEA and ADA.  HHS eliminated the Late Career Practitioner Policy on April 15 and agreed to resolve the investigations through EEOC’s conciliation process.

The resolution provides monetary relief to the affected individuals identified by the EEOC, reimbursement for out-of-pocket costs associated with the exams not covered by insurance, and a commitment from HHS that it will not require employees to undergo medical inquiries that violate the ADEA or ADA.

The company will also provide periodic reporting to the EEOC on the formal complaints related to age discrimination, unlawful medical inquiries, and/or retaliation related to those complaints for the next three years and post an internal notification to its employees of the resolution.

“We appreciate HHS’s willingness to proactively tackle this issue once it was brought to its attention," said Cherie Doak, director of the EEOC’s Minneapolis Area Office.

The EEOC’s Minneapolis Area Office is part of the Chicago District Office, which has jurisdiction over Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North and South Dakota.

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the commission can be found on its website at www.eeoc.gov.  Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.