The former manager of Orchid View Care Home has been struck off after covering up a resident’s overdose and shredding evidence.
Nirmala Read, who worked at the Copthorne home between August 2009 and June 2010, faced seven charges relating to her alleged misconduct.
The charges against Read were proved at a Nursing and Midwifery Council hearing, with the findings released today (October 27).
Read was accused of covering up an overdose of blood thinner, Warfarin, which given to Jill Halfpenny, who was a resident at the home.
Read was also accused of ‘misleading the admitting hospital as to the amount of Warfarin administered’.
The hearing heard evidence from one of Mrs Read’s colleagues who told panel the former manager said ‘you can’t send her to hospital with that, they will shut us down’.
Mrs Halfpenny was one of 19 residents whose deaths at the home were examined by an inquest in 2013.
The West Sussex coroner Penelope Schofield said neglect contributed to five of the deaths, including that of Mrs Halfpenny.
Read asked a colleague to shred a patient’s medical administration record (MAR) chart before Mrs Halfpenny – referred to in the report as patient A – was admitted to hospital.
A report of the hearing states: “The panel concluded that Mrs Read’s actions in writing a replacement MAR chart and instructing the shredding of the original were deliberate rather than mistaken.
“The panel consider that Mrs Read’s actions were borne of a deliberate attempt to conceal deficient care and were therefore dishonest rather than negligent.
“The panel considered that in acting as she did, Mrs Read had prioritised the interests of her colleagues (who had provided the deficient care), the home and herself as the manager over the interests of Resident A.”
The panel concluded that a striking-off order was the only sanction sufficient to protect the public, adding public confidence in the profession can only be sustained if Mrs Read is removed from the register.
Orchid View was closed down and reopened under a new name and management.
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