A former charge nurse at a Cedars-Sinai Medical Center affiliate facility is suing a surgeon at the center, alleging that he attacked her.
Surveillance footage of the alleged attack shows Paula Rickey, who filed the complaint, being pushed out of an operating room by surgeon Kerry Kourosh Assil. The nurse had been working at the facility for five years when the alleged attack happened.
"No woman should be treated like that," Rickey said in tears.
According to the suit, Assil told Rickey he could push her because she "likes the abuse."
Rickey waited a month to report the alleged attack. When she came forward with her story, she said she was punished.
"I was retaliated against," she said. "They made me work on a separate floor. They accommodated him. They reduced my work hours."
Cedras-Sinai Medical Center addressed the lawsuit in a statement, where they said Assil was disciplined.
"The safety and wellness of patients and employees, including those at our affiliates, is paramount to Cedars-Sinai and aligned with our values," the medical center said. "We take complaints seriously, investigate them thoroughly and act promptly."
Rickey's attorney said he believes that the surgeon was given a "slap on the wrist."
"He is a big revenue generator for the company; the rules don’t apply to him,"her attorney said.
For Rickey, she is hoping to receive an apoplogy and wants to make sure no other nurse will be treated unfairly.
"I hope some exposure takes place not only on him, but men who are abusive towards their position of power," Rickey said.