A NURSE has been suspended from the national register after being found guilty of serious misconduct while working at the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals Trust.
Emma Jayne Randall, 41, of Christchurch, was suspended for six months by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
Registered general nurse and clinical site manager Ms Randall admitted inappropriately accessing the medical records of former colleague Patient A, on 15 separate occasions in 2007, but claimed her actions were intended to help her friend.
She also admitted telling a colleague that A’s tumour markers were “not looking good”.
Charges that she told two colleagues Patient A had been tested for chlamydia, and that she wished A would drop dead on a plane to Florida were proved at a hearing in London.
The panel noted that Ms Randall had 17 years experience as a nurse and had breached the NMC’s code as well as the trust’s policies on data protection and patient confidentiality.
It said her comments about Patient A, who was recovering from a life-threatening illness, were “extremely hurtful, spiteful, offensive” and were made on a number of occasions.
“Her conduct fell far below the standards expected of a registered nurse. Such behaviour can only undermine the trust and confidence the public have in the profession and damage its good reputation,” it said.
During the hearing, the panel was told of an alleged developing relationship between Ms Randall and Patient A’s former partner, but charges that the nurse also accessed non-clinical records of A’s new partner to pass information to him were not proved.
The panel decided that there had been a “deliberate and sustained” course of conduct, which had caused a patient harm, but Ms Randall had shown limited insight and remorse.
A trust spokesperson said: “We are unable to comment on individual cases, however protecting patients’ rights to confidentiality and safeguarding data protection laws is a primary concern for the Foundation Trust.
“All staff receive information with their contract of employment on data security and confidentiality and by signing their contract agree to abide by Trust policies and procedures.”