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Monday, 22 December 2014

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Work of nurse must be supervised at West Cumbria care home

A staff member at a Workington care home will have to work under supervision for 18 months after she admitted a series of blunders while in a previous job.

Carolyn Wishart, who is now employed at Branthwaite Nursing Home, was a nurse at the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven.

She appeared at a hearing of the Nursing and Midwifery Council in London.

The hearing was told that while at the hospital, she gave an injection to a patient which was intended for another man – and recorded in her notes that this had been done correctly – in November 2009. Wishart also admitted preparing to give 2.5mls of stomach ulcer medicine to a child, referred to as Patient A, in October 2008, when 1.25mls was required.

Panel chairwoman Winsome Levy described her actions as “serious breaches” of the code of conduct.

She said Wishart’s ability to continue working had been compromised as a result of the mistakes.

The panel imposed an 18-month conditions of practice order.

Ms Levy said: “She does not have full insight into her shortcomings and her failings could have caused serious patient harm.

“'The panel took into account that at the time of the admitted misconduct, she was under a great deal of stress in her personal life. 'The panel is also mindful that her career spans 40 years and that drug administration has been her only notable failure.”

Conditions imposed include meeting with a mentor at the nursing home every three months to discuss her progress.

She must also keep a reflective diary and design a personal development plan focusing on drug administration and accountability.

During the hearing Wishart submitted a certificate from December last year that showed she had successfully completed a drugs safe handling course.

But it also emerged that less than a month later, in January, she made another similar error.

Wishart accepted the charges against her from the outset.

She also admitted the resulting allegation of misconduct.

A spokesman for Branthwaite Care Home said: “We are aware of the outcome of the recent NMC hearing and are working within the recommendations made following the hearing.”

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