Thursday 13 December 2018
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Nurse left dying man in 'disgusting state'

A Bupa nurse who left a man in a "disgusting and undignified state" as he died in a Northamptonshire care home has been found guilty of misconduct.

Paula Fuller was found guilty of a series of charges relating to the death of the man at Acacia Lodge Nursing home, Irthlingborough, in 2009.

Failings included faking his records and lying about the way he died.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council ruled Miss Fuller be struck off, after a hearing in London earlier this month.

Staff employed at the home told the panel how Miss Fuller's behaviour fell short of expectations.

Care assistant Diane Rosario said that at 15:00 BST on 23 August 2009, Miss Fuller was made aware the male resident's feet had turned purple.

Miss Fuller failed to examine the man, identified as resident A, and closed the door to his room.

At 18:20 BST, when the man was found collapsed, the hearing was told she did not try and resuscitate him or call an ambulance, but instead instructed staff to move and clean him.

Her instructions included changing the man's incontinence pads.

In a statement to the panel, staff nurse Mary Freeman described how the man had been left in a "disgusting and undignified state".

Miss Fuller then made and ordered for false entries to be written into the man's "daily life notes" to show he had been offered orange juice, assisted into an armchair, offered soup, given sandwiches and chatted to.

In her defence, Miss Fuller's representative Gabriel Beeby told the panel she had worked as nurse for three years since the case, without incident.

'Out of her depth'

She also said at the time of the patient's death she had been in a state of panic as she had only recently started work after a two-year-break.

While the panel agreed she had been "out of her depth" at work, they found her actions dishonest after reviewing the daily life notes of resident A.

"In these records there is no mention of the resident being moved three times," the panel said.

"The implication when reading these notes is that the resident had been found in his chair.

"It is recorded that Nurse Fuller told his wife that he had died peacefully in his chair.

"The view of the panel was that these actions showed an attempt to conceal what had happened."

They concluded that Miss Fuller would have known her actions were dishonest.