A bullied NHS manager who suffered a nervous breakdown is to receive £150,000 in compensation.
Nanette Bowen, who had been employed at the Prince Philip Hospital in Llanelli for 28 years, was harassed over a three-year period and was eventually signed off sick with stress, according to her union Unison.
The information manager had worked her way up the ranks at the hospital, from porter to information manager, reporting directly to the chief executive.
Unison said that in 2000 she was given a new boss, Eric Lewis, when Llanelli and Dinefwr Trusts merged to become Camarthenshire Trust (now part of Hywel Dda Trust).
Unison said that he made sexual innuendos towards her and was regularly aggressive when challenged. Ms Bowen’s responsibility for hiring staff was also removed, and she had to fill in a daily form for him to monitor her work. The harassment caused Ms Bowen stress and panic attacks, and she was signed off sick.
Swansea County Court found that Carmarthenshire Trust was liable last February. The parties involved have now agreed a compensation package.
Unison general secretary Dave Prentis said: “The compensation will go some way towards her loss of earnings, but it will never make up for years of suffering and the loss of her old life.”
Mrs Bowen said: “The NHS was my life, so I have had to leave a job I loved and have been able to go out properly only three times in the past six years.”
Hywel Dda Local Health Board chief executive Trevor Purt said: “Hywel Dda Health Board does not condone bullying of any kind and policies and procedures are in place to deal with any allegations of inappropriate behaviour.
He added: “Since this case, the former Carmarthenshire NHS Trust, now part of the health board, reviewed systems relating to workplace health and the new organisation has identified additional training requirements to ensure that the issues raised in this type of case are managed appropriately.”