A Daily news digest by Jasper van Santen

Addiction clinic nurse ‘took ecstasy and alcohol with patient’, hearing is told – Telegraph

In Nonsense on May 8, 2012 at 17:15

Addiction clinic nurse 'took ecstasy and alcohol with patient', hearing is told

Addiction clinic nurse ‘took ecstasy and alcohol with patient’, hearing is told 

Amy Sutherland met the man outside work but quickly realised he was being treated at the clinic where she worked, it was said.

She admitted to her boss that she was having a sexual relationship but ignored orders to end the affair, the Nursing and Midwifery Council heard.

During one liaison in June 2009, she is said to have boozed for hours and taken ecstasy in front of the man – a drug addict with a criminal record who suffered from a personality disorder.

When she overdosed, she got her mother to call in sick for her the next day, it is alleged.

Sutherland embarked on an ‘inappropriate relationship’ with the man, identified only as Service User A, while working at the Botchergate Centre in Carlisle, Cumbria, said Joanna Dirmkis, for the NMC.

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“The registrant was not the key worker of service user A,” she told the panel.

“However, there is evidence that Service User A was using the same service as the service the registrant was working at.

“Service User A was a drug addict who had a criminal record and also suffered from a personality disorder. The panel may feel that he was a vulnerable service user.

“The registrant had known the service user outside work and found out subsequently that he was receiving treatment at the same centre that she was working.”

Sutherland informed her line manager Karen Nicoll the pair were having a sexual relationship and she was ordered to end it, the panel was told.

Checks were made, during which the nurse insisted she had broken off the affair. She then handed in her notice on June 1, indicating that she wanted it to take affect from June 26.

Ms Dirmikis said: “On June 15 Ms Nicoll received a telephone call from the registrant’s mother indicating that Amy Sutherland would not be coming to work for health reasons.

“Later the same day Ms Nicoll received information from Service User A’s key worker that his mother had also phoned in to make a complaint because he had not received his methadone prescription and this was due to the fact that his partner had been hospitalised due to a drug overdose.

“Ms Nicoll suspected that the partner of girlfriend might be the registrant so she decided to confront the registrant about this.

“On June 19 she (Sutherland) confirmed that she had not ended the relationship, had taken ecstasy in front of him and had drunk for several hours in his presence.”

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