Thank you for your question.
Under Colorado unemployment law, an individual whose employer fires them for gross misconduct is disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance
. Colorado defines gross misconduct as negligence, harm or the willful disregard of the employer's interests in such a way that demonstrates the employee
's guilt or wrongful intent.
Without seeing any documentation, I cannot obviously say for certain what they are arguing, but it would seem the employer is going to say that the techs discussing the information committed gross misconduct through their intentional, or at least negligent, HIPAA violation. Obviously, the hospital is trying to cover their butts by terminating you because a HIPAA violation can expose them to significant fines if reported.
Therefore, the argument has to be made that this was not gross misconduct, because there was no violation. You can stipulate to the fact that had you revealed any identifying factors, yes, this would have been a HIPAA violation and therefore gross misconduct, but in the absence of such, there is no violation, and therefore no gross misconduct.
Does what I am saying make sense to you?