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FtP case begins against nurse over Pauline Cafferkey temperature recording

  • 25 Comments

A fitness to practise hearing involving a nurse who was with Pauline Cafferkey when she returned to the UK after contracting ebola in Sierra Leone is to begin on Monday.

Allegations of “misconduct” have been made against nurse Donna Wood, who will go before a Nursing and Midwifery hearing panel this morning in London.

The two nurses were at an ebola screening area in London Heathrow airport together when Ms Cafferkey’s temperature was wrongly recorded and she was allowed to continue her journey to Scotland at the end of 2014.

Nursing and Midwifery Council

Ebola nurse Pauline Cafferkey speaks of anguish over NMC case

Pauline Cafferkey

Ms Cafferkey was later diagnosed with the virus, became critically ill and has since had multiple relapses.

Allegations against Ms Cafferkey were previously made by Public Health England – the body running the screening areas at the airport – which claimed she had allowed an incorrect temperature to be recorded on an official form.

PHE also claimed she left the screening area without reporting her true temperature to official staff.

However Ms Cafferkey was cleared of all charges of professional misconduct by an NMC panel earlier this year, after it concluded the virus had impaired her judgement.

During Ms Cafferkey’s case, the panel heard a second registrant – who was not named and only referred to as “registrant A” at the time – was also present when Ms Cafferkey’s temperature was wrongly recorded.

Today’s hearing will see this registrant – Ms Wood – face charges of misconduct.

The panel dealing with Ms Cafferkey’s case heard her temperature was taken twice by a doctor in the airport’s screening area and found to be 38.2 and 38.3 degrees - higher than 37.5 degrees, the point at which further assessment is required.

Her two temperature scores were read out to her and Ms Wood, but ended up being recorded on Ms Cafferkey’s screening form as 37.2 degrees – within the normal range – and she was allowed to leave.

In the previous hearing, the doctor claimed Ms Wood stated at the time she would record 37.2 degrees on the form and they would “get out of here and sort it out”.

But Ms Cafferkey said she recalled the words “let’s get out of here” being used but could not remember who said it or who entered the temperature on her screening form.

Details of the exact charges against Ms Wood are due to be confirmed by the NMC later on today.

The hearing is scheduled to last until 25 November.

  • 25 Comments

Readers' comments (25)

  • michael stone

    'The panel dealing with Ms Cafferkey’s case heard her temperature was taken twice by a doctor in the airport’s screening area and found to be 38.2 and 38.3 degrees - higher than 37.5 degrees, the point at which further assessment is required.'

    DUH ! - the doctor should be recording the readings ! So the rest, is somewhere between irrelevant and 'confusing' (surely the doctor 'decides' what happens next - not the nurse who was with Pauline ?):

    'In the previous hearing, the doctor claimed Ms Wood stated at the time she would record 37.2 degrees on the form and they would “get out of here and sort it out”.

    But Ms Cafferkey said she recalled the words “let’s get out of here” being used but could not remember who said it or who entered the temperature on her screening form.'

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  • So it is going to take at least two weeks to determine who recorded the temperature, who should of recorded the temperature and whose decision it was to allow Pauline Cafferkey to leave interesting. A nurse may be struck off for this? My advice to any nurse who is referred to the NMC is to give up you pin right now the stress of the whole process will weigh you down. Do a job with less demands of you like working for Sainsburys or Tesco.

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  • In other news, GMC clears Dr. of drink driving his way to the surgery, accidentally killing a patient by injecting them with floor cleaner, and using foul and sexist language towards the secretaries due to lack of evidence other than police call logs, CCTV and 20 witnesses in the waiting room...

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  • Since when di the NMC bother about the truth.
    The DR TOOK THE TEMPERATURE
    I wouldn't trust the NMC to write the alphabet

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  • The NMC is an organization full of "stupid" pen pushers. They have no clue what "justice" means and they are cruel. They punish Nurses by relying on hearsays and inconsistent investigation reports.
    What happened now to that Nurse who were first accused of killing patients in Manchester hospital? The NMC found another fall guy in the name of Victorino Chua who is helpless and non British.
    After destroying the image and reputation of that female Nurse who were first accused, what did the NMC do to save her face?...her reputation? ...her life?
    And what about if V. Chua is also innocent?

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  • What Doctor conducting an assessment exercise in the interest of public safety would allow someone to walk away? Especially, having read a temperature that is an indicator of something highly suggestive.

    I'm sure the public are not interested in Registrant A's and Nurse Cafferkey's, alleged responses to excuse themselves. I think perhaps, under those circumstances anyone would feel afraid and just want to get back to a familiar surrounding and feel safe.

    The simple fact, they walked away was a failing on those conducting the screening process as it was neither Nurse Cafferkey's or Registrants A's, decision, irrespective of whether they could manipulate recordings and reassure the assessor otherwise.

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  • I never thought I'd ever hear myself saying that this profession is depressing, demoralising, disenfranchised, dismissed, disorganised, and down right down trodden. The 6 D's anyone? Let's have another 'tool' to help us along the way. SAD

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  • michael stone

    Today's Guardian covers this story on page 4.

    We are told that the doctor who measured the temperatures was Hannah Ryan, who is facing a disciplinary hearing next year before the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service.

    From glancing over the story, it seems as if Dr Ryan had not been 'adequately briefed about' what to do if a somewhat elevated temperature, such as Pauline's, was found: Dr Ryan, from memory, has told investigators that she was 'in shock' and unsure of what to do.

    PS I like this '6 Ds' suggestion ! And 'disorganised' looks as if it might apply to that screening process.

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  • ha, 6D's! amazing. now is that is a mantra I stand firmly in favour of. get it trending!

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  • We could go through the whole alphabet and invent a'tool' 'code' poem'whatever you want to call it and yet still here we are berating ourselves. NMC what acronym could be applied to you noncommittal, non supportive council, answers on a post card please !!

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