Nurse who forcibly gave medication to Hartlepool dementia home resident guilty of misconduct

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A registered nurse who forcibly administered medication to a man with advanced dementia has received a two-year caution after being found guilty of misconduct.

Rumbidzai Seka made several attempts to give medication to a resident at Gretton Court nursing home, in Hartlepool, when the man was distressed and resisting.

She also admitted asking a junior healthcare assistant colleague to hold the resident’s hands down to prevent him from resisting medication.

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A misconduct hearing of the NMC heard Seka, who was working for a third party agency, was the most senior nurse on duty at the time of the night shift incident in July 2021.

The incident occurred at Gretton Court Nursing Home in July 2021. Picture by FRANK REIDThe incident occurred at Gretton Court Nursing Home in July 2021. Picture by FRANK REID
The incident occurred at Gretton Court Nursing Home in July 2021. Picture by FRANK REID

The resident had a diagnosis of advanced dementia, meaning he was unaware of the importance of his medication.

Seka and a healthcare assistant said he was “thrashing around” and extremely agitated during the medication round and he was still distressed and resisting when she returned a short time later.

She admitted forcibly administering the medication.

The panel said this was “serious, persistent” and put a vulnerable patient at risk of harm while causing him distress.

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Finding her actions to have breached the professional standards code for nurses and midwives, the panel stated in a report: “The panel was of the view that your actions did fall significantly short of the standards expected of a registered nurse.”

It found nurse Seka’s fitness to practise impaired as a result.

However, it was accepted it did not last more than a few minutes.

On behalf of nurse Seka, it was submitted it was a single isolated incident, she has shown genuine remorse and has taken steps to address the concerns through relevant training.

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Two further allegations that she held the man’s head back and that her conduct resulted in bruising to his lip were found not proved.

Her name and the caution will appear on the NMC register for the next two years and be made known to any employers.

Lawrence McAnelly, director of the Hospital of God, which runs Gretton Court, said: "This was difficult to comprehend at the time, our thoughts and concerns were for the resident.

"We do take reassurance that the incident was reported swiftly and acted upon and that further to this the NMC have taken what they consider to be appropriate action."

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