Family physician Matthew Heckman, MD, is suing Pittsburgh-based UPMC for alleged wrongful termination, the Gazette reported May 4.
Dr. Heckman is a former employee of Wellsboro, Pa.-based Laurel Health Centers, a subsidiary of UPMC Wellsboro. He was brought on in April 2017 and was fired in 2021 for being a "liability," the report said.
The suit was filed in 2021 after UPMC allegedly refused to pay him for his work at a senior living facility and demanded a $60,000 sign-on bonus to be returned. Shortly after, Dr. Heckman opened his own practice in Elkland, Pa., before UPMC demanded it close because of a noncompete clause, according to the Gazette.
The suit alleges that Dr. Heckman was fired because of his role as a "whistleblower" — he alleged UPMC Wellsboro and Laurel Health Systems attempted to apply for COVID-19 funding by falsely claiming North Penn Health Services was not a subsidiary of UPMC.
Becker's reached out to UPMC for comment addressing the suit. We are awaiting a reply.