Former San Diego County Chief Medical Officer Sues The County

Written by: Skyler Dale

Dr. Nicholas Yphantides, commonly referred to as Dr. Nick, was the former San Diego County Chief Medical Officer. He has recently filed a lawsuit against the county of San Diego. Dr. Nick alleges that he was discriminated against and wrongfully fired after taking a medical leave of absence due to the strain and stress of his continuous duties throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Nick was dealing with the coronavirus pandemic since the onset of the virus in the states. However, due to the long hours and strenuous work with his patients, he decided to take a four-week absence due to insomnia, major depression, and crippling anxiety since last October. This leave of absence was at the recommendation of his doctor. Additionally, Yphantides was fully transparent with his colleagues since he realized that his absence would likely increase his counterparts’ workload.

Dr. Nick was presented with two options following the initial leave: take a second leave of absence or be fired immediately. Of course, he chose the former. However, it was a setup. He was unlawfully required to take a psychological assessment called a Fitness For Duty exam before he could return to work. Yet Dr. Nick was not legally obliged to take this exam. It is only required when an employee is either a danger to themselves or others in the workplace or “incapacitated from performing their essential job duties,” neither of which applies to Dr. Nick.

Dr. Yphantides has served 12 years of loyal service to the county of San Diego. After years of helping others, he is now punished for looking out for his health. Dr. Nick recently said in a news conference that the democrat county supervisors perceived him “as damaged goods who cracked under pressure” and were continuously looking for reasons to fire him.

Dr. Nick’s lawsuit consists of unspecified damages to cover lost wages and benefits, emotional distress, and attorneys’ fees, as well as an injunction prohibiting the county “from continuing to engage in unlawful practices.”


Picture from: KGTV