In Leitgen v. Franciscan Skemp Healthcare, Inc., 7th Cir. appeals court confirms summary judgment by the district court denying Dr. Leitgen’s claim of discriminatory pay practices.The physicians at Franciscan Skemp Healthcare were paid a salary plus a bonus. The bonus for professional fees for obstetrical delivery services were collected and paid to the participating GbGyns equally (per capita), rather than based upon productivity, WRVUs or some other unit of service. Although Dr. Leitgen was among the highest salaried physicians, she nevertheless complained that the bonus system discriminated against women because she and another woman ObGyn were the most productive members of the department, and were receiving relatively less pay for the same services.

Although the court assumed for purposes of the argument that Dr. Leitgen had demonstrated protected conduct, it also reviewed a long and timely history of complaints by patients and other professionals regarding Dr. Leitgen’s disruptive conduct. The court concluded that the hospital’s explanation was a reasonable explanation and that Dr. Leitgen failed to prove the existence of a causal connection between her forced resignation and her complaints about gender discrimination.