A Co. Armagh care home nurse has been struck off after stealing tablets and doctoring medical records.
Following a substantive hearing, a Fitness to Practice Committee at the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) found that Armagh-based nurse Camila Andre’s fitness to practice was “impaired”.
The committee made a striking-off order and imposed an interim suspension order of 18 months to cover any potential period of appeal.
Miss Andre had previously received a police caution for theft and possession of Class-B controlled substances.
The panel noted that, in accepting the police caution, Andre admitted to the theft and possession of class B drugs.
“She had admitted that she had stolen 62 tablets and a further strip of eight tablets”, it heard.
The committee heard the case arose whilst she was employed as a registered nurse at Hamilton Court Care Home in Armagh.
It was alleged the incidents occurred in February and March 2022 when a manager noted discrepancies in the books. When questioned she said she had disposed of 62 Cocodamol tablets as they were overstocked.
She also denied knowledge of eight missing Codeine tablets.
She later admitted to taking the tablets after requesting to meet her manager in the car park.
The panel also heard two other findings against her.
On November 11, 2016, she was subject to a suspension order for one year. Facts found involved a “number of drug administration errors in 2014 and one charge of dishonesty relating to the cover up of an error”.
Then on December 7, 2017, she received a two year caution order for dishonesty for not declaring here previous employment history when applying to be a care worker.
Having found Andre’s fitness impaired, the panel took into account a number of aggravating features before imposing a sanction.
It noted that she had “abused her position of trust” and that her misconduct was “premeditated and took place on more than one occasion over a period of time”.
It added that she “falsified records and documentation which placed vulnerable patients at risk of suffering harm” and “breached her professional duty of candour as she did not own up when initially questioned”.
Furthermore, the panel concluded that her previous regulatory findings suggested a “pattern of misconduct”, noting that she had previously provided assurances to past Fitness to Practice Committee panels that her dishonest actions would not be repeated.
“Miss Andre’s conduct in this case does not appear to demonstrate that lessons have been learnt from previous regulatory findings”, the panel determined.